Are Dental Implants the Best Tooth Replacement Option?

A missing tooth affects your smile, your bite, and your self-confidence. While preserving a tooth is always our goal as your go-to Northern Virginia dental office, sometimes a tooth might have to be removed and replaced. Often, dental implants are the best tooth replacement option. However, the recommended solution for your situation will depend on the urgency of the situation, your budget, and your overall dental health. 

Let’s explore some of the tooth replacement options your local dentist might recommend.

1. Dental implants.

Dental implants are a popular solution for replacing one or more teeth. They look and function like your real teeth, are stable and durable, help preserve the jawbone, and do not affect the surrounding teeth.

Dental implants are a multi-step solution. A surgical titanium post is implanted in the jaw bone, then when this is healed, the replacement tooth is created and added over the top. Sometimes temporary teeth might be used during the replacement stage. 

However, while dental implants are natural-looking, strong and permanent, they are one of the more expensive tooth replacement options available. Additionally, because they require a surgical implant, the timeline for completing the procedure can be longer than other approaches.  But do not be alarmed, the team at Optimal Dental Center in both our Fairfax, VA and Reston, VA offices work with our patients on a customized treatment plan that also fits your budget.

2. Bridges.

Bridges are used to fill gaps in your smile. They consist of two types: implant-supported and tooth-supported. Implant-supported bridges are used to replace a row of missing teeth. However, only the two teeth at the ends of the bridge are implants, with the rest of the bridge attached to those implants. Tooth-supported bridges use your existing teeth to support the bridge. 

Bridges are a cost-effective solution for replacing several missing teeth in a row. They are effective and natural looking. However, they are only suitable for specific situations where there are teeth adjacent to the missing one(s). In the case of implant-supported bridges, multiple sessions will be required, with healing time involved. For tooth-supported bridges, there is some risk of damage to the adjoining teeth, as these will need to be filed down to be fitted with the crowns to which the bridge will be attached. The bridge may also need to be replaced in the future.

3. Dentures.

There are a few types of dentures: traditional, partial, and implant supported. Removable partial dentures are a less bulky alternative to traditional dentures. Used to replace several missing teeth, they are clamped into place and are removed at night or for cleaning. They are economical when compared with implants and bridges, and treatment is quick and non-invasive. They can also be easily repaired, replaced or extended. However, they do not look as natural as implants or bridges and can be uncomfortable.  In addition, the jaw bone in the missing teeth areas will continue to deteriorate as the tooth roots are missing.  This eventually causes the dentures to not fit properly after a period of time. 

Implant-supported dentures are a cost-effective middle ground between regular dentures and full-arch dental implants. Implants are used to hold the dentures in place, making them more stable than other denture types. They also offer a better fit than conventional dentures, improve chewing ability, and are more natural looking. Depending on the design of the dentures, they might be taken out at night, or left permanently in place.

Talk to our Drs. at Optimal Dental Center About Your Best Tooth Replacement Option. 

If you are missing one or more teeth and are looking for the ideal solution to restore your smile, talk to our team of experts at our local Fairfax, VA and Reston, VA offices. We will examine your smile and walk you through the best tooth replacement options with consideration for your visual preferences, timeline and budget.

For more information about how our tooth replacement options can transform your smile, book your complimentary consultation appointment with Dr. Dang at Optimal Dental Center today!