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Your Options When Only One Tooth is Missing
Posted on 1/25/2021 by Dr. Michael Allard
Missing a tooth is not just an aesthetic concern. Did you know that missing a single tooth can make it difficult to speak and chew, and increases your chances of tooth decay and further tooth loss? There are many options available today to replace a single missing tooth. Here are some of the most common methods we use for single tooth replacement that will beautifully restore your smile, increase your self-confidence, and improve your oral health.
Dental implants are titanium posts that we surgically place in your jaw. During a process called osseointegration, the dental implant fuses with your natural jawbone, creating a strong foundation for a prosthetic tooth. Dental implants are the most popular and frequently recommended method of restoring a single tooth, due to the fact that they are permanent. Since a dental implant functions as an artificial tooth root, it completely stabilizes your jaw and prevents your other teeth from shifting. Dental implants are versatile and can be used to anchor various restorative options like crowns, bridges, and dentures.
Crowns are tooth-shaped covers that serve a variety of purposes. When it comes to single tooth replacement, crowns can be used either to cover an artificial tooth (pontic) that is attached to a dental implant, or to anchor a dental bridge in place. In some cases, you might even be able to get a same-day crown to replace your missing tooth. Crowns can be made out of porcelain, metal, resin, or a combination of materials, but porcelain is the most popular option since it looks indistinguishable from a natural tooth.
Finally, a dental bridge is a row of crowns and pontics that can be used to replace one or more missing teeth in one section of your smile. The pontics fill in for the actual missing tooth, while the crowns are cemented onto healthy teeth on either side of the missing tooth, holding the bridge in place. A dental bridge can also be permanently stabilized by an implant. Contact us to discuss all your options for single tooth replacement.