Understanding Your Tooth Restoration Options: Dental Implants, Bridges, And Dentures

There are a number of ways to improve your smile when you have missing teeth. While traditional methods to replace a missing tooth are either bridges or removable dentures, dental implant technology is now used as a common method to restore a missing tooth with a natural-looking replacement. Most people are good candidates for dental implant restoration. If you are basically in good health, you are a non-smoker, and you don't have blood sugar levels that are out of control, your dentist will likely restore your missing tooth using a dental implant. While this is generally a two-visit procedure and requires several months of healing, your dental implant with then be just like a regular, permanent tooth in your mouth.

Traditional Bridges and Dentures

A traditional dental bridge is one or several teeth in a row that are secured into your mouth by wires. This is a way to replace a missing tooth without disturbing the gum tissue below the false tooth. Dental bridges are attached to nearby teeth, instead of placed on a dental implant that has been embedded into the jaw. Traditional bridges can cause problems with the teeth they are secured to, as the wires can scrape and cause erosion of the enamel. Dentures fit into the mouth without wires, and are generally used to replace an entire row of teeth in your mouth.

How Dental Implant Restoration Works

Dental implants work by embedding a titanium implant into your jaw. Your dentist will place the rod into your jaw, and it will fuse with your jaw bone over several months. Some dentists may put the artificial crown on your implant right away, while others will wait until the implant has fused. Either way, once you have an embedded titanium rod and a new crown in your mouth, you have a restored dental implant that is treated just like a normal tooth.

Why You Can Be Turned Down for Dental Implants

Smoking is a big problem for dental implants and has led to enough implant failures that dentists no longer will use dental implant technology on a smoker. If you quit, you will then become a reasonable candidate for dental implants. In addition, you may not be a good candidate if you suffer from severe gum disease, or if you have blood sugar levels that are out of control.

When you are ready to restore your smile, it's time to talk with a dentist at a dental office like Tijeras Dental Service about options.