Maybe you have lost one or more of your natural teeth as either a result of an accident or simply through ageing. Your confidence has plummeted; you feel unattractive and you no longer want to show off your smile in Solihull. You know it is important to have your missing teeth replaced without delay, not only to avoid the ravages of tooth loss on the jawbone and gums but to prevent your teeth moving and to avert gum disease.
Presented with this conundrum, dental implants or fixed bridge, you need to decide what is best for you. The dentists at The Same Day Teeth Team in Solihull are happy to advise you but, ultimately, the decision is yours. By being in possession of all the facts and weighing up the pros and cons, you can determine what is best for you.
What are Fixed Bridges?
A fixed bridge is permanently cemented into place, bridging the gap between one or more missing teeth. Your dentist will prepare the adjoining teeth, by shaving a little from the surface, to create the required space to align the crowns correctly with the opposing teeth, creating a strong connection to perfectly seat the bridge; strong enough to bite into a crisp apple. The crowns, or false teeth, are made of porcelain, shaped and coloured to match your existing teeth, giving you a natural smile. Fixed bridges are not too complex but they do require your natural teeth are healthy and strong; your teeth are not decayed and you have no underlying structural problems. And you must be aware, once your natural teeth have been adjusted to take the fixed bridge, there is no going back. Your natural teeth will not serve as normal teeth once they have been adjusted. The other negative aspect of a fixed bridge is the teeth become more susceptible to decay and cavities, possibly setting you up for root canal treatment in the future and there may be some gum or bone loss. Fixed bridges must be maintained, with careful brushing and flossing, and replaced periodically to maintain their function and to keep them looking good.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants, by contrast, are more complex to fit but can be trouble free, if fitted by skilled dentists. The dental implants are tiny titanium supports inserted, by a surgical procedure, into the jawbone. A prop is then fixed to act as a platform for a dental crown. This is a lengthy procedure, lasting anything from 3 months, as the titanium post has to fuse with the jawbone before the abutment is attached and the new crowns can be fitted, by screw or cement. However, the advantage is the crown may last 10-15 years before being replaced, and there is little or no gum and bone loss. You can brush and floss as normal, unlike the complex maintenance of a bridge.
Aesthetically, both a bridge or dental implants achieve a great resolution to missing teeth but there are many advantages in choosing dental implants, not least because we actually create a post, simulating a natural tooth root, for the crown and you don’t need to loose any healthy teeth, from having teeth ground down. With fixed bridges, the bone loss and gum issues of ageing may lead to gaps under the false teeth.
With both a bridge or dental implant, the costs are determined by taking into consideration certain factors.
- The number of teeth requiring replacement and their position
- The materials used and the quality – metal alloy, composite resin, etc.,
- The dentist’s experience
- Complex surgery for dental implants
Although bridges may initially appear to be less expensive, compared to implants, you should consider dental implants. Furthermore, it is considered dental implants provide better aesthetic results.
Are you a good candidate for dental implants? Take this easy TEST, or contact us to book your first FREE consultation at The Same Day Teeth Team in Solihull where we can discuss your dental needs in full detail and agree the best solution to your problem.