Missing teeth are not as uncommon as you might think, there are plenty of reasons why an individual might be missing teeth, this could be everything from but not limited to, severe gum disease, trauma, infection, and even overcrowding issues.
Tooth Replacement – Do I Need It?
If you have insurance coverage, or it’s within the budget, you should consider replacing a tooth with a dental implant, bridge, or dentures, depending on your specific situation. You may not know this, but your teeth can move and change their position. The common reasons for this are, age, gum disease, or gaps. The gaps could be from teeth that are completely missing, or alignment issues in the bite.
If your teeth move they can affect your bite, and the ability to chew food can cause speech issues and may make you self-conscious about your smile. It can also open your mouth up to a greater risk of infection. If you have more of your gums exposed and not covered by teeth, it may give room for more bacteria to develop in that area. This can increase your risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
Tooth Replacement Options
Dental implants are incredibly effective at replacing missing teeth, if the patient is eligible they typically have a 98% success rate! They also can last an incredibly long time if the patient takes care of them effectively. Dental implants do a great job at replicating the original teeth, both in appearance and function.
If the patient does not have healthy teeth on either side you can also get an implant-supported bridge. This is a similar concept to the singular dental implant. Both abutment teeth will be inserted into screws, which will support the pontic teeth.
People are often under the impression that dentures are only for the elderly population, but this is not true. Partial dentures can be used to replace missing teeth in your mouth at an age. If your remaining teeth are not strong enough to support a bridge, then partial dentures may be a valid option for tooth replacement.
Which Option Is Best?
The dentist will be the only one that can answer this question as there are plenty of different factors that will need to be considered, a few of the factors are:
- How many teeth are remaining?
- How strong are the remaining teeth?
- How strong is the jaw bone?
- Is there severe gum disease?
- Which teeth need to be replaced?
- Does the patient have insurance coverage?
Since replacing teeth is a significant procedure, these will have to be taken into serious consideration before the final solution is chosen.
At Smiles Dental Group, you can make an appointment for a consultation. This will involve having the dentist examine your situation, and then they will inform you of the best solution, or solutions that you can take.