If you’ve lost one or more teeth, you can see the way it changes your mouth. Chewing and speaking both become noticeably more difficult the more teeth you lose. This doesn’t have to be the norm.
Thanks to modern dental technology, there are now more tooth replacement options on the market than ever before.
Here’s what our restorative dentists want you to know about replacing your missing teeth.
How To Replace Missing Teeth
A dental implant is a prosthetic tooth root (typically made of titanium) used to anchor a crown. Many of our patients appreciate dental implants because they look and function like natural teeth. Afuses with your jawbone over time so it won’t slip like dentures. Dental implants can last a lifetime if given proper care.
Unlike other tooth replacement options, dental implants stimulate jawbone tissue so it doesn’t disintegrate over time. Jawbone deterioration is a serious issue because it affects your oral health and the shape of your face. Dental implants also help hold adjacent teeth in place so they don’t loosen and eventually fall out.
To be a candidate for the dental implant procedure, you must have healthy gum and jawbone tissue. However, if you don’t have sufficient jawbone tissue, our dentists may recommend a bone graft. While dental implant surgery is more invasive than other tooth replacement options, it’s also more long lasting.
Like the name suggests, a dental bridge “bridges” the gap in your smile left by a missing tooth. A dental bridge is comprised of a false tooth anchored on both sides by crowns. Our dentists may recommend a dental bridge if you don’t want to wait months for a dental implant to fuse to your jawbone. A dental bridge can be made in two appointments—one if we use CEREC.
Whether you’ve lost one or more teeth, you may want to ask about getting full or partial dentures. Dentures are removable false teeth that help you eat and speak normally after major tooth loss. While dentures slip occasionally when you sneeze or cough, this can be easily corrected by biting down gently and swallowing. If you notice your dentures slipping more often, don’t hesitate to call our office to see about getting your dentures refitted.
While wearing dentures, it’s important you continue taking care of your oral health. We recommend brushing your gums to avoid plaque buildup in empty sockets. Otherwise bleeding gums could make it painful to wear your. You’ll also need to keep your dentures submerged in water or cleanser any time they’re not in your mouth to avoid cracking and warping.
If you aren’t sure what tooth replacement options are right for you, schedule a consultation with our dentists as soon as possible. The sooner we’re able to address oral health issues like missing teeth, the sooner we’ll be able to prevent further tooth loss, jawbone deterioration, and facial collapse.
Our Grandville, MI implant dentists want you to feel confident in your smile. We’re always happy to answer any questions you might have about your restorative dentistry options. To make an appointment, call Grandville Dental Health Center at (616) 531-0360!