Restorative dentistry provides many solutions for teeth replacement including bridges and implants. Knowing the benefits of each procedure can help you better understand your choices.
What is a bridge?
A bridge replaces one or more missing teeth. It is typically made up of an artificial tooth fused between two crowns and held in place by the teeth on either side or by dental implants. There are many different types of dental bridges. Your dentist will recommend the most appropriate choice based on the location of the missing tooth (or teeth) as well as the condition of your teeth, mouth and gums.
What is an implant?
A dental implant takes a more conservative approach in restorative dentistry. Here an artificial root is inserted into the jawbone to replace that of the natural tooth. An artificial replacement tooth is then attached to the implant. The implant acts as an anchor to hold the replacement tooth (or dentures) in place.
Bridge vs. implant
- A bridge requires the teeth on either side of the restoration to be shaped which can reduce their lifespan. Also, if one of the supporting crowned teeth breaks or develops decay or nerve damage, the bridge and its three or more crowns must be removed and replaced. Possible complications include root canals, sensitive teeth and decay around the bridge.
- An implant is a standalone restoration which doesn’t involve or affect the adjacent teeth. This also makes it easy to clean and floss, thereby promoting healthy gum tissue and underlying bone.
Watch this video to learn more about the choice of a bridge vs. an implant in restorative dentistry.
An experienced dentist can explain your treatment options for restorative dentistry in detail.