What’s The Difference Between Dental Implants And Bridges?

If you’re missing a single tooth in Riverside, you may be wondering if a dental implant is right for you, or if a dental bridge is a better option. Not sure what the difference is between these two treatments? Find out now in this blog from Riverside Tooth Co., and learn everything you need to know. 

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants are made of two parts; an implant and an implant-supported restoration. The implant is made of titanium and shaped like a screw, and it’s surgically implanted into your jaw and gum tissue to function as an artificial tooth root. The implant-supported restoration is typically a dental crown, which is attached to the implant to replace your missing tooth, restoring your bite and your appearance.

Dental implants have a number of great advantages compared to dental bridges. They are long-lasting, with a lifespan of 30+ years with proper care. 

They also look and feel completely natural, and do not require any specialized care. You can treat a single-tooth implant just like a natural tooth, and brush and floss it normally to keep it clean and healthy.

However, there are some drawbacks. Implant surgery is invasive, and it takes about 3-6 months to heal from treatment, so this treatment takes much longer than a bridge. 

You also must have a strong jaw bone to have a dental implant, so this may not be the best choice if your jaw bone has already weakened due to tooth loss.

What Are Dental Bridges?

Dental bridges are made of two dental crowns, which are attached to healthy teeth on either side of your missing tooth. A false tooth (pontic) is attached to these two crowns, and it “bridges” the gap where your missing tooth used to be, restoring your smile and your bite. Bridges have been used for decades, and are a time-tested method of replacing missing teeth.

Compared to dental implants, bridges have some key advantages. The treatment is very fast, first of all. You can restore your smile with a bridge in 2 appointments over a period of 2-3 weeks, in most cases, compared to 3-6 months for an implant. 

Bridges are also much less invasive, since there is no need to cut into your jaw bone or gums to place an implant. Bridges also have a very secure hold on your teeth compared to alternative treatments like partial dentures, since they’re permanently anchored using two crowns.

As far as drawbacks go, a key disadvantage of bridges is that they require two of your healthy teeth to be trimmed. This process is not reversible, so these teeth will be permanently affected by the placement of a dental bridge. 

Bridges also have a 5-15 year lifespan, so they do not usually last as long as implants. It’s also somewhat more difficult to clean and maintain a bridge, compared to an implant.

Which Treatment Is Right For Me? Find Out At Riverside Tooth Co! 

Still not sure if a bridge or dental implant is right for you? The team at Riverside Tooth Co. is here to help. Dr. Kabir Sandhu can explain each option in further detail, discuss the pros and cons of bridges vs. implants, and make sure you choose the right procedure for your needs. Contact us now online or give us a call at (951) 686-2565 to get started.

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