Missing teeth impact more than your smile. They also affect your bite, the way you choose food, your lip posture, and even your self-confidence. At Oakville Place Dental, we can help you reduce these side effects with either a dental bridge or dental implants. We also offer emergency dental services in Oakville.
Both dental bridges and implants are replacements for your missing tooth, but they work in different ways. Not sure which is right for you? Here, we’ll discuss what dental implants and dental bridges are, how they work, and which is the best option for your smile.
What are dental bridges?
Dental bridges, like implants, eliminate the appearance of missing teeth, but without the need for a surgical procedure. Instead of drilling into the gum and jawbone to create a synthetic tooth, a bridge is held in place by connecting the synthetic teeth to two healthy teeth using caps.
The healthy teeth on either side of a missing tooth are filed down to allow the cap to be placed over top. Between the two caps is a false tooth. Once the caps are secured in place, the false tooth sits between them, flush to the gum. At a glance, dental bridges looks like natural teeth. Just like dental implants, you can brush these teeth in the same way you would a natural tooth.
What is a cantilevered bridge?
If you don’t have two teeth to use for a bridge, then a cantilevered bridge may be used instead. This bridge uses the same technique of capping a natural healthy tooth, but the cantilevered bridge will rest over the gap being secured by a single healthy tooth instead of multiple.
The Pros and Cons of Dental Bridges
Dental bridges are a great way to conceal a missing tooth, but like all procedures, there are pros and cons to consider. The pros of dental bridges include:
- Cheaper than dental implants
- Less invasive
- Quicker procedure
- No need for bone grafting
The cons of dental bridges are:
- Damage to surrounding teeth
- Shorter lifespan
- No support for bone and gum structural issues
What are dental implants?
As the name implies, a dental implant is a synthetic tooth implanted into the gum to appear and act as a natural tooth. To do this, a hole is drilled into your jawbone into which a metal post is placed. Once the post is stable and the gum and jawbone have healed, a crown is placed over the post. The crown is coloured to resemble your natural smile.
Once sealed in place, you can chew normally. The implant is a permanent fixture. Unlike dentures, you don’t remove the implant at night to sleep. Instead, it is cared for like the rest of your teeth, with regular cleanings throughout the day.
If you require emergency dental services in Oakville, your dentist will ask you to wait until your other treatments have healed. Dental implants require surrounding gums and teeth to be in tip-top shape to support the implant process.
The Pros and Cons of Dental Implants
Dental implants give the best sense of regaining a natural tooth. Even with this benefit, though, there are other pros and cons to consider, such as:
- More support for gum and jawbone structure
- Less strain on other teeth
- Longer lifespan
The cons of dental implants include:
- Longer healing time
- More expensive than bridges (especially if you need more than one implant)
- Longer process (you need to heal between each step)
- Requires time off from work
- More invasive than bridgework
Who are good candidates for implants and dental bridges?
As long as you have healthy teeth for the bridge to be connected to, a dental bridge will work in your mouth. Dental bridges have a high success rate, even if the lifespan of your bridge is less than that of an implant.
Getting an implant requires healthy gums and jawbone. If your jawbone is imperfect or damaged, you may require a jawbone graft. Jawbone graft surgery takes a piece of bone from another part of your body, or a synthetic bone, and grafts it into your jawbone to provide greater support for the post of your implant. Patients with gum disease or brittle bones may not make good candidates for dental implant surgery.
Are dental implants and bridges considered emergency dental services in Oakville?
The answer is no. However, your dentist may recommend you get a bridge or implant if they are concerned that your missing teeth will lead to bigger problems. In general, emergency dental services in Oakville are the type of services that could lead to pain and require a quick fix. Tooth extraction, fillings, and bonding on a cracked tooth are all examples of emergency dental services.
Which is best: Dental implants or bridges?
At a glance, it might appear that bridges are the best bet by a simple calculation of pros and cons. This isn’t always the case. While bridges have a longer pros column, some feel the pros of implants outweigh them. The decision for your procedure is personal. Some patients might choose implants for longevity and natural feel, while others prefer bridgework to avoid taking time off work to heal.
If you require multiple teeth replaced, then your dentist might recommend a mixture of services. Some Canadians get both bridges and implants to fill gaps without overstraining the jaw. Your dentist can help you choose the right path for you based on your oral health.
Contact Oakville Place Dental for More Details
Interested in learning more about dental implants vs. dental bridges? Curious about emergency dental services in Oakville? Oakville Place Dental can help. Our team of experienced dentists serves families across Oakville, Ontario. It’s important to us that our patients feel comfortable, stay informed, and receive the best care in the province.
From general dentistry to dental prosthetics and beyond, we’ve got you covered. We invite you to call Oakville Place Dental today. Call us at 1-647-496-2721 to speak to a member of our team. You can also book an appointment online.