When you have a missing tooth, you will need to consider your tooth replacement options sooner rather than later. This is because missing teeth cause a wide range of concerns within your smile and can cause your other teeth to shift around. Two common tooth replacement options that our Arlington Heights dentist office offers to patients with missing teeth are dental bridges and dental implants. If you are choosing between these two tooth replacement options, here are some questions to ask yourself:
Are you willing to undergo a surgical procedure?
The main difference between these two dental treatment options is that dental implants require a surgical procedure while dental bridges do not. With implants, a titanium post is inserted beneath your soft tissues. This post will provide your dental implant with tooth-root functionality. Another procedure is needed to attach an abutment to the post, which will eventually attach the post to the external dental crown. A local anesthetic is used to keep you calm and comfortable during the procedure. However, if you are unwilling to undergo dental surgery, dental bridges may be your preferred treatment option.
What are your long-term goals for your smile?
You use your teeth every day for chewing and speaking purposes. It’s important to consider your long-term goals for your smile when choosing between these two tooth replacement options. Dental implants have a very high patient satisfaction rating because they provide more long-term benefits than any other tooth-replacement option. Because implants have tooth-root functionality, your restored tooth is like new again once the treatment is complete. This means no dietary restrictions or oral hygiene hazards. With dental bridges, you may need to make adjustments to your diet as well as your at-home oral hygiene routines to ensure the bridge hardware is not damaged or impacted by food residue.
How quickly do you need your teeth replaced?
Because dental implants require a surgical procedure, the healing time associated with this treatment plan is much longer than the healing time for dental bridges. The dental implant process can take several months to complete, while dental bridges will only require about two visits to the dentist’s office. If you are missing one or more teeth and are struggling to pick between these two treatment options, schedule an appointment with Arlington Heights dentist, Dr. Brent Engelberg. Dr. Engelberg is a professional restorative dentist who can provide the insight you need to make the best decision for your smile.