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Bridges Vs. Implants – Which is right for me?

When patients come to me to replace a missing tooth, or if we have to extract one for one reason or another, we start a conversation about what’s the best option to replace it. Are they a better candidate for a dental bridge, or do we look at dental implants?

Both have pros and cons. And not everybody is a candidate for both.

In this post, I hope to explain the difference between the two and provide you with the answers you need to make an informed decision.

Part of the decision of which is right for you depends on your oral health. If you are considering implants, you must have healthy gums and jaw to support the implant. But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves…

Dental Implant Vs. Bridge: What’s the Difference?

A dental implant is basically creating a new tooth, with a “root” anchored in the jawbone. Over time, the root (usually a titanium cylinder) bonds and fuses with the jaw. During this process – usually a few months – we put a protective cover. Once this is complete, the cover is replaced with a temporary crown, while the gum reforms, and later a more permanent tooth. If you are only replacing one tooth, this may be your better option.

A dental bridge does not re-create a root in your mouth. Instead, it uses the teeth on either side of the missing tooth/teeth as support for the artificial crowns. The crowns then create a “bridge” to cover the gap, but aren’t attached to the jaw. if you are missing more than one tooth, or if your teeth on either side have larger fillings, this may be your better option.

Pros & Cons of Each

Dental Implant Pros:

Dental Implant Cons:

Dental Bridge Pros:

Dental Bridge Cons:

Your decision is completely up to you. As a prosthodontist*, I specialize in crowns, implants and bridges, and can ensure you have the most natural-looking results.

Remember, whichever option you choose, proper replacement is the key to your confident smile.

* Prosthodontists are experts in the restoration and replacement of teeth – they make smiles look beautiful and function the way they should. After completing four years of dental school, Prosthodontists receive an extra three years of specialized training in an American Dental Association (ADA) accredited graduate program. Prosthodontics is one of the nine dental specialties recognized by the ADA.

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