Think it’s not important to replace a single missing tooth? Think again!
While many people feel this way, just one missing tooth can start a chain reaction that can lead to many oral and overall health issues. Once a tooth goes missing, the bone beneath it will begin to deteriorate and your jaw bone will slowly begin to shrink. The surrounding teeth will begin to shift into the empty space. It can also increase your chance of gum disease, gum tissue decay, and further tooth loss. Luckily, Dr. David Rever offers many options to replace the tooth at his Silver Spring, MD dentist office.
Choosing the right treatment to replace your tooth can be overwhelming. The dental staff at Advanced Total Dental Care are here to help you weigh the pros and cons of each option. If you qualify, we will recommend a single dental implant that will support a dental crown to replace your tooth. This is the only option that will look and function like a real tooth.
Dental Implant-supported Crown
A dental implant is actually the screw-like metal post that an oral surgeon surgically places into the jaw bone. Its purpose is to replace the missing tooth root and support a dental crown, bridge, or denture. One of the greatest benefits to choosing an implant restoration is that it will stimulate the bone like the original tooth root once did and prevent bone loss.
The process of getting a single dental implant is straightforward. First, the dentist will coordinate with an oral surgeon to implant the titanium post. Then, we will wait for about three to six months to let the post fuse with the surrounding bone. Next, your dentist will attach a small piece we call an abutment to the implant post. This will require an additional few weeks of healing. Lastly, Dr. Rever will attach the dental crown at his Silver Spring, MD dental office.
The benefits of choosing an implant-supported dental crown are that it will feel completely natural, allow you to eat normally, and smile comfortably. Caring for an implant-supported crown is no different than caring for your natural teeth. A dental implant-supported crown is the next best option after a real tooth.
The negatives to choosing a tooth implant include the amount of time it takes to complete the process and the total cost. A dental bridge or partial denture will cost a fraction of what a dental implant costs. The process to get a single dental implant can take up to seven months or more if pre-treatments are necessary. Learn more about dental crowns.
Other Tooth Replacement Options
You can also choose a partial denture or a dental bridge to replace your tooth. A bridge is a dental restoration that consists of two dental crowns with the replacement tooth (the pontic) in between them. A dental lab fuses them together to make the bridgework.
The downside to choosing this option is that the dentist will need to grind down adjacent teeth to accommodate the crowns. For example, the dentist will permanently reduce two healthy teeth to replace one single tooth. This adds a lot of pressure to the two adjacent teeth and they are also at greater risk for decay. But a dental bridge will cost significantly less, and you can typically get one in about 2-3 weeks.
A removable partial denture can also replace one tooth. The base will include metal clasps to hold it in place and a single replacement tooth. The downside to choosing this option is the clasps are often visible when you smile and it comes with a lot of restrictions.
A partial denture can slip around in the mouth causing slurred speech, and may even fall out while you are talking. It requires nightly care in addition to your regular oral hygiene routine. While this option costs the least, it will not be nearly as natural as a tooth implant.
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