Dental Implants or Bridges: Which is Better?

Teeth replacements have come a long way in the past few decades and losing a tooth doesn’t cause the same dilemma it did back in the day. There are now several viable options you can turn to when you lose a tooth, and the two most popular replacements are dental implants and bridges. When deciding which tooth replacement is best suited to you, there are a number of factors you need to consider, and we’re going to let you in on exactly what those are. Here’s everything you need to know about dental implants VS bridges.

Healthy dental concept

What is a Dental Implant?

A dental implant is a titanium post that supports a crown and functions just like a natural tooth would. The titanium post acts as a tooth root and is surgically inserted into the jawbone. Once it has been placed in the jawbone, it fuses into it and anchors the false tooth. This process is formally known as osseointegration, and it takes about 3-6 months for the new bone to finish growing around the metal.

When osseointegration is complete, a temporary crown is attached to the post frame. The gum is given a chance to grow and shape itself around said crown and then a permanent crown is put in place.

dental implants

What is a Dental Bridge?

A dental bridge is a tooth replacement that bridges the gap between single or multiple missing teeth, hence the name. Dental bridges are attached to remaining healthy that are referred to as anchoring teeth. The false teeth in between are called pontics. There are three types of bridges that can be used to fill in the space between missing teeth:

·      Traditional Bridges: This bridge is created by a crown for the tooth on either side of the gap and is composed of either porcelain or ceramics fused to the metal. Traditional bridges are the most common form of dental bridges. 

·      Maryland Bonded Bridges: Also known as resin-bonded bridges, these dental bridges are composed of porcelain, porcelain fused to metal, or plastic teeth and gums that are supported by either a porcelain or metal framework. Porcelain or metal wings are typically on only one side of the bridge and are bonded to existing teeth.

·      Cantilever Bridges: Cantilever bridges are dental bridges that are designed when there are adjacent teeth found on just one side of the missing tooth. This dental bridge doesn’t fare well at the back of the mouth as it can’t withstand a lot of force.

dental bridges

Weighing the Pros and Cons

Permanency

One of the main advantages of dental implants is that they are a high-quality dental implant that can last a lifetime if they are cared for properly. Dental bridges, on the other hand, are not a permanent solution, and they typically last anywhere from five to 15 years.

Time

Getting dental implants put in is a multi-step process that involves an initial consultation, bone grafting, implantation, and the attachment of a permanent crown once everything has healed around the temporary crown. The dental bridges procedure is much shorter than the dental implants procedure since it doesn’t require bone grafting and is more of a short-term solution.  

Oral Health

Dental implants are widely considered to be better for your oral health than dental bridges. They preserve your jawbone, promote the healing of your bone structures and gums, and don’t strain surrounding teeth. By contrast, dental bridges put a significant strain on the teeth attached to your dental bridge since they rely on them for support. They also don’t treat underlying structural issues like the bone loss that results from tooth removal.  

Cost

In terms of cost, dental implants do cost more than dental bridges upfront, but if you factor in the cost of having to get your bridges replaced, you may find that getting the dental implants procedure is more cost-effective. Plus, with dental implants, you can rest easy knowing that you’ll get your money’s worth.

bridges and tools

All in all, the determination of which dental implant option is “better” depends on the individual. Don’t hesitate to talk to your dentist about different treatment options and ask questions about what each one entails. Your dentist is there to help you find the best treatment option and provide you with the right solution.

At Dentist North York, we provide our patients with lifelong oral health solutions using our innovative dental procedures and techniques. We specialize in the dental implants procedure and use the highest quality titanium dental implants so that our patients end up with pearly whites that look and function just like their natural teeth. Contact us today to get a dental implant solution you can count on.