Thanks to ever-advancing dental technology, there are more options than ever when it comes to tooth replacement and restoration. Many patients get dental bridges, or dental implants, to replace lost teeth. Bridges and implants are two very different procedures. The best way to determine which one is right for you is to speak to your dentist. Having a basic understanding of both procedures can help you as well, so here’s a guide to the difference between a dental implant and a dental bridge.
A dental bridge bridges the gap created by a missing tooth or missing teeth. Two anchoring crowns will be places on either side of the gap, with a false tooth in between. The false tooth can be made of porcelain, alloys, gold, or a combination of materials. The bridge is held in place by natural teeth.
A dental bridge will restore the appearance of your teeth, help with chewing and speaking, maintain facial structure, and keep remaining teeth in place. There are several different types of bridges meant to address each patient’s unique needs.
A dental bridge lasts about ten years, after which it will need to be replaced. Dental bridges create a little bit more work when it comes to oral hygiene, as extra care is needed to floss around the bridge.
Bridges are initially less expensive than implants, but they are less durable than implants and will need to be replaced more often.
Just like it sounds, a dental implant involves the replacement of a missing tooth with an implanted false tooth or teeth. A dental implant is a metal frame that is surgically implanted into your jawbone. Once the frame is in place, false teeth can be mounted into them.
A dental implant is fused to your jawbone and provides durable and stable support for any false teeth. This creates a solid base for false teeth, giving you a dental restoration that is strong and permanent.
A dental implant is more expensive than a bridge, but once it is implanted, you will not need to have it replaced. A dental implant should last a lifetime. Dental implants also look just like your natural teeth.
A dental implant is only possible if the gums are healthy enough to support the implant. If you have suffered, or are suffering from, gum disease, an implant may not be a possible option.
The main differences between a dental bridge and implant are cost and durability. Each patient is unique, and to really understand which option is right for you, make an appointment with your dentist today!