I have lost a tooth. This is my first time to lose one. I’ve had a crown before, but that is it. I can’t decide if I should get a dental implant to replace it or a dental bridge? I know the implant requires surgery which seems pretty serious. What’s the advantage?
Surgery sounds frightening, especially if you’ve never experienced it. However, it is not as frightening as it sounds. You can think of it as a scheduled nap. As adults, we need more of those anyway. In all seriousness, though, I’ll take you through each with their pros and cons and you can decide which seems better for your particular situation.
A Dental Bridge
With a dental bridge, you have a false tooth suspended between two dental crowns. The benefits to this are it is less expensive and doesn’t require surgery. If one of the adjacent teeth needs a crown, it will make sense to knock out two procedures in one go. The downside is, you have to crown two teeth that are likely healthy. It’s rarely recommended to grind down healthy tooth structure if you don’t need to.
With a dental implant, you have a prosthetic tooth root placed into your jaw, then after a period of healing your dentist will place a crown on top of the implant. This is the closest thing to having a natural, healthy tooth in your mouth again. It also helps preserve the bone where your tooth was removed.
I would talk to your dentist, look at your budget and decide which will be the best option for you.
A Cosmetic Consideration
Either procedure requires you to get a dental crown. A good cosmetic dentist can match a crown to your teeth exactly. You should know, though, whatever color they make it is permanent. If you decide later to whiten your teeth, your natural teeth will whiten, but your crown will not.
If you think you’ll want a whiter smile, it makes more time to have the teeth whitening done before the crown is made. This way the dentist can match it to the whiter color you’ll want to keep permanently, saving you money in the long run.
This blog is brought to you by Decatur, AL Dentists Drs. Drake and Wallace.