Single Tooth Replacement Options

If you are missing just one tooth, there are three options for tooth replacement:

  • Partial denture
  • Dental bridge
  • Dental implant

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.

Multiple Tooth Replacement

illustration showing dental implant and dental crownIf you have several teeth together that need to be replaced, there are usually two options:

  • Partial Denture
  • Dental Implants

A partial denture can replace many teeth as easily as it replaces one. In fact, many people have the same denture and add teeth to them as they lose more teeth.

Dental implants can be used to replace any number of missing teeth. The tooth replacement option is usually set up as a dental bridge, with some crowns on dental implants supporting artificial teeth between them. Dental implant bridges are highly successful, letting you bite and chew normally with a full set of attractive teeth.

Dental bridges supported by your natural teeth are not recommended for more than one missing tooth because longer bridges can put too much stress on the supporting teeth.