Was 2016 a tough year for your smile? Namely, did you lose a tooth or have to have one extracted? As a child, losing teeth can feel like an exciting rite of passage. Sadly, as an adult, that is rarely the case. Most adults feel frustrated and embarrassed by tooth loss. They often struggle with uncertainty, as well, about how the smile will look or function following the loss. Fortunately, modern dental prostheses make it possible to complete a smile both functionally and cosmetically. That means you don’t have to settle where your smile is concerned. Instead, you can get right back to enjoying your life, without worrying about missing teeth.
What Options Are There for Smile Completion?
The most common form of smile completion is dentures, either partial to replace a single tooth or a few that are missing, or full dentures, which complete an entire arch of a smile. In most cases, dentures are either held in place by the mouth’s natural curvature, or temporarily, through the use of denture adhesives. While dentures are a fast and affordable option, some patients find them uncomfortable, as they can shift during chewing.
For patients looking for more security and permanence, dental bridges and dental implants are great solutions.
How Are Bridges and Implants Unique?
Both dental bridges and dental implants help to complete a smile with added security, compared to unsupported dentures. That said, they each have unique benefits.
Bridges – comprised of dental crowns, which can be affixed to remaining teeth, bridges help to do exactly as their name implies, to bridge a gap created by tooth loss. Bridges can be completed relatively quickly, and offer great esthetic benefits, since porcelain crowns can be carefully crafted to resemble natural teeth.
Implants – dental implants are an even more secure option for smile completion, and that is because they are the only prosthetic that helps to replace both a missing tooth and its root. The post used to simulate a healthy tooth root helps to supply nutrients to the jaw, as it stabilizes a replacement tooth.