Surprisingly, many people believe they can avoid replacing a single missing tooth especially if people cannot see it while they eat, speak or smile. In reality, not only will a lost tooth cause embarrassment but it can also lead to long term problems, especially with your oral health.
It can cause your remaining teeth to shift towards the gap leading to painful TMJ issues. People with missing teeth also have a greater chance of suffering from gum disease, tooth decay and additional tooth loss.
If you are missing a tooth or have damage to a tooth and need an extraction, Dr. Drew Shulman, an experienced Philadelphia implant dentist, offers a number of replacements. He will recommend a single dental implant whenever possible to restore the health and function of your teeth.
An implant secured restoration will look, feel and function similarly to a natural tooth making is the number one solution tooth replacement. After a consult, your dentist will create a treatment plan with the best solution to replace your tooth.
Missing Tooth Replacement Options
Of the options available to you, it important to learn about them all so you can make an informed decision. Every patient and situation is different so there is no one size fits all solution. A single dental implant is the next best solution to a natural tooth however not everyone will qualify for it.
Dental Implant Supported Crown
A dental implant is actually a tiny biocompatible post that is available in many shapes, sizes and material. An implant anchored crown is comprised of three parts: the post, an abutment, and the dental crown. The dental implant procedure will take the longest of all your options. The post will need to be surgically placed into the jawbone at the location of the missing tooth.
During the next few months, the implant post will fuse with the surrounding jaw bone to create a stable foundation for your replacement tooth. The next piece is the abutment and your dentist will attach it to the implant post. Then they will secure the dental crown to that.
The dental implant process will take many months to complete and is the most expensive option. However, it is the most comfortable and permanent solution. The implant is the only option that will replace the missing tooth root keeping your jaw bone stimulated and healthy. Unlike a dental bridge, a tooth implant will not damage healthy teeth. This is the most stable, attractive and comfortable solution.
For many years, the typical way to replace a missing tooth was with a dental bridge. A bridge is a fixed dental restoration that is comprised of two dental crowns on both ends with a replacement tooth (the pontic) in between them. Your dentist will fuse the crowns and the pontic together to create a single restoration that will bridge the gap.
The dentist will need to grind down those two adjacent natural teeth to create room for the dental crowns. Then he can cement the bridge into place, filling in the gap in your smile.
It only takes two visits to place a bridge. It is a much more affordable solution and the process will take less than a month to complete. While this solution is cheaper and faster, it requires damaging perfectly teeth and it does not prevent bone loss.
Dentists can use a partial denture to replace one tooth and is easily the most economical solution. However, some partials need metal clasps to stay in place. You can easily see these when a person is speaking or smiling. They are also capable of moving around while speaking or eating.
They will require daily additional care that includes removing them nightly to soak in a cleaning solution. While not the most popular solution, this is the cheapest one.
Call to schedule a consultation with Dr. Shulman at his dentist office in Northeast Philadelphia, at (855) 832-4034.
Learn More About Dental Implants