Do you have missing teeth? A gap in your teeth can actually cause bone loss or prompt your other teeth to move into crooked or tilted positions. You may suffer from an uncomfortable bite or from extra plaque buildup in the area. As you consider replacing your missing tooth, discover the old-fashioned solution as well as today’s preferred replacement option— dental implants.
The Alternative Solution
Dental bridges used to be the method of choice for replacing missing teeth. However, this method involved trimming down healthy teeth, partially destroying them in order to create supports on either side of the gap so the dental bridge could be placed.
Because of the invasive nature of this treatment and its damage to healthy teeth, most dentists only use a bridge in specific circumstances. For example, if the jawbone is too weak or thin to support a dental implant, a dentist may recommend a bridge. Another drawback for the bridge solution is its limited lifespan, which may be up to 10 years with proper care. Bridges also do not function as well for chewing, since they are not quite as durable or stable as dental implants. However, they are significantly less expensive than implants.
The Modern Option
Today, most dentists in Singapore and elsewhere recognise the value of the dental implant and use it instead of a dental bridge. A dental implant doesn’t affect the healthy teeth adjacent to it. Instead, it mimics the form and structure of the original tooth.
Dental implants have roots, just like natural teeth do, except that the artificial root is usually in the form of a screw. The dental implant insertion takes place in three phases. First, the screw is inserted into the jawbone and the top is sealed with a protective temporary cover. Once the screw has completely fused with the bone, over a period of several months, the temporary cover is switched out for a temporary crown. After the gums have grown around the temporary crown, the dentist removes that as well and replaces it with the permanent crown.
Dental implants look, feel, and function just like any of your other teeth. They are made from incredibly durable material, so they last for decades, sometimes up to 40 years or more. A dental implant can replace one missing tooth or several, depending on the patient’s situation.
Full Teeth Replacement
If a patient is missing many teeth in succession, a dentist may employ dental implants as the supports for a bridge. For patients who need to replace all their teeth, a dentist may suggest implant-supported dentures, either permanent or removable. Dentures work best when used with implant supports to keep them stable and provide chewing power. Dentures by themselves, without implants, are essentially similar to retainers. They tend to wear away the bony ridge of the mouth, eroding their own support so that they become unstable and uncomfortable. If you are interested in full teeth replacement, talk with your dentist in Singapore about fixed dentures that use implants for stability.
Whether you’re looking for a single-tooth replacement or a solution for multiple missing teeth, Orchard Scotts Dental is the place to go. We are one of the best dental clinics in Singapore, with years of experience helping patients with all sorts of dental issues. In addition to replacements, we offer enhancements for your teeth such as whitening, veneers, and Invisalign.
Source: Tuscaloosa University (n.d.)