There are three ways that are commonly used to replace one or more missing teeth :
Dental Implants, Tooth Supported Fixed Bridges and Removable Options
Implants are our first choice for many situations involving one or more missing teeth. Just like medical science has allowed us to replace knees and hips, dental implants have been developed to act as a replacement tooth.
Implants are a high-tech means of allowing you to have a functional and attractive replica of the teeth you may have lost. They are essentially artificial roots upon which Drs. Steel can build a crown for a single tooth. In addition, implants can be used to support a fixed bridge or anchor a removable appliance, such as a full or partial denture. Because of their versatility, dental implants can be a valuable treatment option for many situations.
Dental implants have significant advantages over other tooth replacement options – they don’t require removing any enamel from your other teeth and they are not attached to your adjacent teeth. Also, they have an outstanding track-record for longevity. As a result, you can floss them just like your natural teeth and they can look and perform great for many years.
Drs. Steel have used a team approach for dental implants for the past two decades. We work with excellent Oral Surgeons and laboratory technicians to help insure the best possible results. Not all implants are alike - making your dental implants both function well and look natural requires planning, technical skill and an eye for detail.
After your placement of dental implants, they require maintenance, just like your natural teeth.If you invest in restoring your smile with implants, make sure you have regular checkups to insure that they will be long-lasting and retain their appearance.
Just because you had a bridge or denture placed before does not necessarily mean that you can’t have implants now or in the future. Contact our office if you would like to schedule a time to discuss how implants can be used to help replace your missing teeth.
A bridge is a means of replacing a missing tooth or teeth by attaching the missing tooth to other teeth that are adjacent to the space.They are often called “fixed” bridges or fixed partial dentures, because they are not removable from your mouth.
Typically, they are cemented in place. They are designed to span the space where you are missing teeth and allow you to return to function. They can also restore you to your prior appearance or possibly improve the appearance of your smile, depending on the situation. When completed, they should look like natural teeth and provide you with an excellent tooth replacement option for many years.
Bridges can be designed in a variety of ways. Traditionally, the teeth next to the space will be reduced in size so that crowns can be placed to support the replacement tooth. Sometimes, we can design the bridge so that the adjacent teeth do not need to be prepared for crowns, but still provide support (commonly called resin bonded, or “Maryland” bridges).
If you are interested in replacing missing teeth with a bridge, or would like to improve your appearance by upgrading from an existing bridge, call Drs. Steel to discuss your options.
Removable Tooth Replacement Options
Removable is generally not our first recommended option for most of our patients, but remains a viable way to replace missing teeth on a temporary or long-term basis for some situations.These appliances have been commonly referred to as “dentures” over the years if they are long-term and “flippers” for more temporary designs.
Dentures can either be full or partial, depending on whether or not they replace all of the teeth on one arch or just some teeth.With the continuing advances in modern dentistry, our office has seen fewer patients in recent years that require full dentures, but the option still exists.
Keep in mind, however, that most patients that have full or partial dentures could choose to eliminate the removable appliances in favor of implants and/or bridges. In many cases, implants can also be used to help stabilize existing or new dentures and help prevent rocking while improving function.
Removable dentures (with or without implant support) are a good way to replace multiple missing teeth for some patients. Contact our office if you have any questions.
In summary, each patient has different needs and goals in mind that we can address. We will be happy to review your situation and help you determine which method of tooth replacement is the best choice for you. Make an appointment today.