Last updated on August 16th, 2023
Missing one or multiple teeth impact the beauty of your smile and overall appearance. It also affects your confidence negatively. Moreover, missing teeth not only cause aesthetic problemsbut also damages the proper functioning of your teeth. For functions such as speaking and chewing, a full set of teeth is required. Furthermore, if the missing teeth are not replaced, it may cause various additional dental problems in the future.
What Causes Missing Teeth?
Various factors may cause missing tooth/teeth. Gum disease, severe tooth decay, severe injuries are the most common factors for missing teeth. Genetic factors can cause missing teeth as well. The good news is that regardless of reason, modern dentistry can solve the problems with missing teeth. There are many treatment options to fix missing teeth. All of these dental appliances for missing teeth have advantages and disadvantages. Also, the dental conditions and needs of every patient are unique. So the right treatment option can be determined only by the assessment of the dentist.
What Are Options for Missing Teeth?
The most common and effective dental options for missing teeth are dental implants and dental bridges. Removable Partial Dentures are also among the missing teeth options.
1. Dental Implants for Missing Teeth
A dental implant is an excellent solution to a missing tooth. Regardless of the location of the missing teeth problem (it can be missing back teeth replacement or you may have missing front teeth), a dental implant provides a wonderful solution. An implant is a replacement toothroot which is typically made of titanium. It is a screw that is drilled into your jawbone. After the new bone grows around this screw, a crown is placed on the top of this screw as a replacement. This replacement looks and acts like your natural tooth. An implant can replace a single tooth. If there are multiple missing teeth in different parts of your mouth, more implants can be placed.
Dental implants provide many advantages. First of all, it is the most durable and reliable treatment option. Dental implants provide a permanent solution to the missing tooth problem, and it can last for decades. If a high-quality material is used, and a competent dentist does the procedure, and if the patient takes care of dental implants, they can even last a lifetime. However, dental implant procedure includes surgery, and the treatment requires a longer time compared to other options. Moreover, good oral health (healthy jawbone) is required to be eligible for this surgery.
2. Dental Bridges for Missing Teeth
A dental bridge is not a replacement tooth root like a dental implant. Yet, it is a fixed solution as well. It uses surrounding teeth as supports and bridges the gap between these teeth. Mostly the two surrounding teeth are shaved down, and then crowns are placed over these supporting teeth. The bridge that replaces the missing tooth is attached to these crowns on the adjacent teeth. Since it doesn’t require surgery, it is a less invasive procedure compared to dental implants. And it is relative a quick fix for missing teeth. However, neighboring teeth are shaved to be prepared as supports, which is one of the disadvantages of this option. And cleaning the underneath of the bridges require more attention.
Dental bridges can replace a single tooth or two teeth in the same area of your mouth. If the support is strong enough, sometimes even more than two teeth can be replaced with dental bridges. Also, when multiple teeth are missing, implant supporter bridges are another treatment option. Dental implants replace the two teeth at the two ends, and the others are held in their place with the support of these two implants.
3. Removable Partial Dentures for Missing Teeth
Removable partial dentures can replace missing teeth as well. These dentures are worn during the day and taken out when sleeping at night. Compared to dental implants and bridges, this option has some significant disadvantages. Some dentures need metal clasps to hold them, andthese clasps may be visible when speaking or smiling, which causes an unpleasing appearance. Moreover, since these replacements are not fixed like the options mentioned above, they may move when using your teeth. So, this solution is not preferable in terms of both aesthetics and function of your smile.
On the other hand, a removable partial denture is a much more economical solution to the missing teeth problem. It is among the options for missing back teeth. Especially if you need to replace a set of your teeth, a complete set of dentures are among the options you may consider.
How Much Does it Cost to Replace Missing Teeth?
Replacing missing teeth costs depend on the procedure you choose. The dental implant is the most expensive procedure. Various factors affect the treatment costs; typically, a dental implant procedure ranges between $3.000 and $70.000 in the USA. The costs are similarly very high in the UK and many European countries. The bridge is a cheaper option than the dental implant. The cost of a bridge depends on the number of crowns and the material that will be used for these crowns. And removable partial dentures are the cheapest treatment option for missing teeth.
What is the Best Way to Replace Missing teeth?
Only your dentist can determine the best option to replace your missing teeth. Because, besides all these abovementioned advantages and disadvantages, all procedures also have some eligibility requirements. For instance, healthy gums and enough bone in the jaw are needed for the dental implant procedure. On the other hand, the health of supporting teeth is a critical requirement for the dental bridge procedure.
The area where you have missing teeth also a factor for the dentist when determining the best option. You may be missing adult teeth,or you may be missing canine teeth. Missing back teeth solutions of your dentist may be different than the solutions for missing adult teeth. When the problem is with your adult teeth,your dentist may even consider first using braces for missing teeth. And sometimes, patients might ask for veneers for missing teeth. However, veneers can’t be used to replace missing teeth because they are placed on existing teeth.
At Maltepe Dental Clinic, our experienced dental team has completed all types of treatments successfully for years. Please contact us if you have further questions about these procedures.