With seemingly very similar results, many wonder, what are the benefits of dental bridges versus dental implants for replacing missing teeth? While both dental appliances bear a virtually identical appearance once installed, their methods of installation vary greatly. Regardless of which method you choose, filling in the missing teeth in your smile has many health benefits aside from simple aesthetics. Losing teeth increases your chances of developing gum disease and will eventually cause the supporting bone structure of your jaw to weaken. This is why it’s incredibly important to consider the pros and cons of each dental appliance before choosing which to invest in.
What’s the difference between Dental Bridges and Implants?
The main difference between bridges and implants comes down to the way in which they are mounted to your gums. A dental implant involves a metal anchor to be installed in order to fuse a new tooth or teeth to your jaw, creating a bond that is virtually impossible to loosen. Once the implant is installed, your gums will adapt to and surround the new teeth, creating the appearance that a tooth had never been missing. Your jaw bone will also adapt to the implant, in a process known as osseointegration. While this process might sound intense, it’s as simple as walking into our office, undergoing a simple surgery, and walking out with a new set of teeth within the same day. The surgery itself only takes 1-2 hours per implant, long-term the entire process involving checkups takes up to 6 months.
On the other hand, Dental Bridges are far less invasive. Bridges rely on natural teeth surrounding the appliance in order to support it. This means that the two teeth adjacent to the bridge must be intact and healthy in order for the bridge to be effective, otherwise, an implant will be required. Once a mould is made of your existing teeth, the impression is used to create the bridge which is made up of multiple teeth that are fused together in order to support one another. The bridge is then cemented to the surrounding teeth where it will look identical to a natural set of teeth and function just as well. Once the process is complete the bridge is a permanent addition to your smile and cannot be removed. As mentioned it is possible for dental bridge and implant to work together in order to most effectively create the desired result, but this depends on your specific dental situation and should be discussed with your dentist.
What are the benefits of Dental Bridges & Dental Implants?
While each appliance does have its own set of advantages, they share many of the same benefits. Both will allow you to eat any kind of food and pronounce words you weren’t previously able to. Missing teeth cause your cheeks to become sunken in appearance, with these missing spaces filled your face will become fuller and more proportionate. Both appliances will also keep your jawbone and facial muscles from weakening, and prevent an increased chance of developing gum disease.
Dental Bridge Benefits
- The procedure is less invasive, as it doesn’t require surgery
- Has a much shorter recovery time
- More affordable upfront costs
- Only two visits to your dentist are required following the procedure
Dental Implant Benefits
- The appliance is not reliant on surrounding teeth being intact
- It structurally fused to your jaw for improved rigidity
- Can last up to 15 years