The absence of a tooth can be devastating to your confidence, but with the right replacement, you can once again enjoy a complete and healthy smile. Tooth replacements have advanced much in the past few decades. Do you know the difference between a dental bridge and an implant? A dental implant-supported crown is often the ideal option, but several factors will first need to be considered, including if the tooth loss happened recently or years ago. Understanding the factors will be important, but your dentist or prosthodontist will best be able to help you decide.
A dental bridge is made up of custom-made, lifelike replacement tooth (or teeth), known as a pontic, which is supported by a pair of dental crowns on either side of the pontic. To support the replacement, the bridge’s crowns sit atop the healthy, natural teeth next to the gap in your smile. The supporting teeth are known as abutment teeth, and they provide stability and security for your replacement tooth as you bite, chew, speak, and smile. If you have multiple missing teeth that are consecutive, implants may be used to support the abutment crowns.
The cost of the dental bridge may initially be less, but bridges may need to be replaced at some point in the future. While implants may seem more expensive at first, they can be cost-effective in the long run by being much more durable for your smile. A dental implant may not be the best choice if the tooth or teeth have been lost for a long time, as the gum and bone may have receded causing more extensive repair to place the implant. Dental implants make the prosthetic fit closer along the gums, which leaves a more natural appearance. This can also make it easier to keep the mouth healthy to prevent a buildup of bacteria beneath the bridge.
Dr. Carmona can help you choose the right replacement. To learn more about the technology we use or to schedule a consultation at Austin Prosthodontics, call 512-250-9444. We also proudly welcome patients from Cedar Park, Round Rock, Pflugerville, Leander, and all surrounding Texas communities.