Single Tooth Replacement Options
If you are missing just one tooth, there are three options for tooth replacement:
A partial denture is a traditional option for replacing lost teeth. The partial denture is a plastic or metal base that fits into your mouth. The replacement tooth is attached to this base, and the entire thing is braced by hooks, clasps, or other anchoring structures that go around your natural teeth. This tooth replacement option has the most limitations. It doesn’t let you bite and chew normally, it can be uncomfortable, and it can be hard to keep clean. Worst case scenario is that this can potentially lead to more lost teeth.
A dental bridge uses your natural teeth as supports for a replacement tooth. The bridge consists of two dental crowns that go over your natural teeth to secure the replacement tooth between them. A dental bridge lets you bite and chew normally, and in the right situation is a great tooth replacement choice.
A dental implant uses an artificial tooth root that attaches to your jawbone. The replacement crown is attached to this tooth root. This lets you bite and chew normally, and it can work anywhere you have enough bone to support the implant. Plus, it doesn’t rely on neighboring teeth for support, so it doesn’t cause them extra stress.