Replacing a missing tooth is more important than you probably think. If you don’t get a replacement, the repercussions extend far beyond aesthetics. Your remaining teeth may become displaced, your bite may become misaligned, and it can affect your confidence when talking or smiling.
When replacing a missing tooth, there are generally two options: a bridge or partial denture. They each have their own distinct advantages, and a denturist can help you figure out which one is right for you.
However, before you head to your local provider, you should probably learn some of the differences between the two. Here’s what you need to know.
Bridges, also known as fixed partial dentures, are false teeth that are affixed between two healthy teeth using crowns. For this reason, bridges can only be used when there are healthy teeth available on either side of a gap to provide support. Bridges are a permanent tooth replacement solution and are bonded or cemented into place. They can be made of alloy, porcelain, or even gold.
Bridges can be used to replace a section of multiple missing teeth, but all the gaps need to have healthy teeth on both sides to be a viable option.
Partial dentures, also known as flexible partial dentures, are prepared using a flexible, molded base with a false tooth attached. They fit around remaining teeth and are attached with metal claps.
They are not permanent and can be removed for cleaning, however this doesn’t mean that they are not strong and can dislodge easily. They provide fully functional teeth and can be used to both restore regular eating habits and help maintain proper tooth alignment of the remaining teeth.
So which one is right for me?
While the right answer to this question entirely depends on the recommendation of your denturist, there are certain pros and cons attached to each option.
A bridge is a long-term solution and lasts for more than 5 years. It is best for people who do not like the hassle of removing their denture every night for cleaning. However, they can only be used by patients with remaining teeth that are strong, which is why their use is limited. Patients experiencing bone or gum loss are generally not eligible for getting a bridge.
Partial dentures, on the other hand, are a much more cost-effective option and are perfect for patients who have multiple teeth missing. They also make up for gum loss because of their base. They are preferred for patients who like to remove their false teeth before going to sleep at night, which can also help improve their oral hygiene. However, partial dentures have a much shorter life than bridges, and therefore must be replaced more often.
Questions about how you can most effectively replace your missing tooth? Book a free consultation appointment with us today to find out which option will work best for you. We are a complete denturist service in Everett, WA, and provide all denture services or solutions, including implant dentures, full dentures, fixed partial dentures and flexible partial dentures. We’re ready to help you restore your smile!