What is the Best Way to Replace a Missing Tooth?

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010, 2:21 pm

What is the best way to replace a tooth that is lost?  As with most things in life the answer is not as easy as it once was.  When a tooth was lost to decay or gum disease in years past the only way to replace it was using a dental bridge.  Today patients may have a choice between that dental bridge or the more permanent and natural feeling dental implant.

It is important to replace missing teeth as soon as possible because missing teeth can cause changes in your bite (occlusion),  movement of the remaining teeth, speech problems, temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ), and increased risk of gum disease and decay for the remaining teeth.

Most people are familiar with the concept of the dental bridge – they have been used successfully for many years.  The materials used to create dental bridges today offer patients a more life-like appearance and may be fabricated from a combination of porcelain and metals or using completely metal-free materials.  The dental bridge spans the gap of the missing tooth by placing special crowns on the adjacent teeth which are attached to an artificial tooth or pontic.

A dental implant is a comfortable and permanent way to replace missing teeth.  If you are a candidate for an implant your dentist will place the implant, an artificial tooth root, into the jaw.  The bone of your jaw heals around the implant, holding it in place just like a real tooth root.  A special crown is then placed over the implant.  Studies have shown that dental implants have a 98 percent success rate if cared for properly.

If you have lost a tooth due to accident, gum disease or decay don’t delay replacement.  Please contact Wilbanks Smile Center today to discuss your treatment options and schedule your appointment.  Conveniently located in Toccoa, Georgia we can be reached at 706-886-9439.

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Category: cavities, gum disease, Implants

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