Why Dental Implants are Better Than Bridges

Why Dental Implants are Better Than Bridges

Why dental implants are better than conventional bridges

When it comes to options for tooth replacement patients are increasingly opting for dental implants over the usual dental prostheses such as dentures or conventionally placed bridges. Since an implant sits securely in the jaw and looks like natural teeth, they offer superior durability and outstanding aesthetics when compared to conventional bridges.

There are four major categories of restorations available for tooth replacement:

Bonded dental bridge

Bonded dental bridges use the teeth adjacent to the empty space to help support the missing tooth by using a very thin piece of metal or tooth-colored material to overlay and bond to the back of the adjacent teeth. A tooth replacement is set between these two bonded pieces in order to fill in the empty space. Failure rate is about 25 percent after just five years of use.

Cantilevered dental bridge

A cantilevered restoration uses the closest tooth next to the empty space to support the missing tooth using the either the back of the neighboring tooth or a full crown to help support the missing tooth. Success rate is higher than with a bonded bridge depending on how much pressure the actual replacement endures due to grinding and normal wear.

Conventional dental bridge

This type of restoration uses crowns on the teeth next to the empty space that are hooked together to help support the missing tooth. Unfortunately conventional dental bridges predictably fail at a range from 20 percent over 3 years to 3 percent over 23 years.

Dental implant

A dental implant is created from a high performance material (zirconium oxide) that is inserted into the bone to act like a natural tooth-root. Due to its nonmetallic construction the ceramic dental implant does not interfere with the body’s immune or meridian systems and therefore does not create a potential for rejection. Once anchored into the jaw, the implant integrates directly into the bone to give firm support to the artificial replacement that it is built to hold and should last the lifetime of a patient.

Routine maintenance of a dental implant is exactly the same as a person would follow for normal teeth.

Healthy patients prefer implants

Patients who prefer dental implants say that they are more comfortable and provide a more secure fit than fixed bridges or removable dentures. Dentures tend to make a person feel and look older. They can cause embarrassment in social situations when they slip and click, and hamper the everyday pleasure of eating comfortably.

Reasons to consider a ceramic dental implant:

• preserves healthy natural tooth

• looks and feel like natural teeth

• enhances a sense of self-confidence when eating, talking and smiling

• no gooey denture adhesives to deal with

• no embarrassingly loose dentures

• improves quality of speech

• perfectly natural comfort and fit

Anyone who is missing one or more of their teeth may be a candidate for implants. If more than a few of the teeth are missing, implants in supporting a crown or bridge can replace those teeth and function as normal teeth without concern for decay. If all or most of the teeth are missing, then implants may be placed to fix in place a full-mouth fixture.

Conventional Dental Bridge

Getting fitted for a denture bridge requires the manual modification of the teeth on either side the bridge, a process that significantly weakens adjacent teeth. In order to fit a conventional bridge the structure of the existing teeth has to be ground down to support the false bridge. This practice weakens adjacent teeth while dental implants do not affect the health or longevity of neighboring teeth at all.

Once established, implants are firmly set into the bone making them more natural than dentures or conventional bridges, with none of the shifting that dentures normally display.

Some problems with conventional bridges

• since they are bonded to the adjacent tooth with a glue-like substance, bridges more often become loose and fall out

• Cracks and fissures form over time, due to normal wear and tear, causing them to become fragile and prone to breakage

• Improper fit can lead to either tooth decay or irritation to the surrounding sensitive tissue in the mouth

No such problems with implants

Ceramic dental implants are recommended to patients because:

• Chewing is easy with excellent biting pressure provided by implant

• Dental Implants have a good reputation for providing reliable and long-standing service, providing decades of use with few, if any complications

• Comfortable fit and durability because they are well secured and integrated with the bone and gums

Considering the overall advantages patients can expect to benefit from as a result of choosing a dental implant, they are better able to enjoy a healthier lifestyle without the restrictions many denture wearers face. Ultimately, not worrying about dentures becoming loose or falling out when speaking or eating offers a freedom that simply makes sense. The more secure foundation offered by a dental implant improves biting pressure, making it possible to enjoy the foods that a patient probably would not be able to using a dental prosthetic. With improved chewing ability it is more likely for a person to have a better diet and therefore improved overall healthfulness.

2 thoughts on “Why Dental Implants are Better Than Bridges

  1. I am in the middle of a dental nightmare. I endured many of years of Gerd due to an unusual stomach problem and ended up with a non voluntary gastric bypass last May. This was over a series of years and I have lost so many teeth from it, the last 6 months being the hardest hit. I lost a bridge in December and one tooth to abcess. She saved one tooth and crowned it but decided the tooth next to it was bad and i needed to see an endodentist…it was a two year old crown. I did that last Wednesday and he ran into problems into the canal and shattered the crown. I left there frustrated, but next day was awful. He did not give antibiotics before canal but send me nome with some. Obviously they didn’t work the pain and swelling became bad withing 24 hrs, but I waited until Friday morning and called him so he sent more meds, then called me and said i want you over to the oral surgeons and have an emergency bacterial drainage. I did, yes, another unexpected event and expense. Well 24 hours from then it got worse so i sent him a text of my face, neck, etc and he sent me to ER, they admitted me immediately, just got out last night , had stitches and tube from oral surgeon removed this morning and he is now telling me the tooth wasn’t a candidate for canal…what was consultation for? I now have an ugly painful front tooth and paid out lots of money and don’t know what to do next….HELP

    • Wow, I’m so sorry for your experience. It’s impossible to diagnose over the Internet, but if you want to give our office a call we would be happy to talk with you and try to shed some more light on what’s going on, why it’s happening, and most importantly, how you can fix it.

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