What is the Difference Between a Dental Bridge and a Dental Implant?

Dental Bridges Kennewick, WA

Dental bridges and implants are two of the options you get to choose from when it comes to replacing missing teeth. Both provide you with natural-looking artificial teeth that restore your smile and other functions of your teeth. Implants and bridges can even be combined to provide you with a hybrid solution.

Differences between dental bridges and implants

Not sure whether to go with a dental implant or a bridge? Let us take a more detailed look at these popular ways to replace teeth:

1. Implants

An implant is an artificial tooth root that is surgically inserted into jawbone tissues. The implant fuses with bone structures around it becoming one with the jaw through a process called osseointegration. The implant can then be fitted with a restoration like a crown, dentures, or bridges.

The benefits of replacing missing teeth with implants include:

  • Implants are typically made out of titanium which is durable enough to last a lifetime. Good oral hygiene increases the longevity of implants.
  • Implants do not require any special care
  • Implants allow patients to avoid the bone tissue loss that occurs when teeth fall out. They transfer bite forces into the patient’s jaw, providing it with the stimulation it needs to remain healthy
  • Implants prevent the remaining teeth from becoming misaligned as they try to close up the gap made by the missing teeth

While implants provide more benefits than other ways to replace teeth, their installation requires oral surgery, and some patients might not be eligible. For example, a person with an autoimmune disorder might not be a good candidate for implants since a complication like an infection would severely jeopardize their health. Patients also need to have enough depth in the jawbone to hold implants in place. Bone grafts can be used to thicken the patient’s jawbone if they do not have enough depth for implants.

2. Bridges

Dental bridges are a less invasive approach to replacing teeth that do not require surgery. However, getting bridges often requires having alterations made to the two teeth closest to the gap. It is a permanent alteration that cannot be reversed.

Bridges are typically made from an impression of the patient’s teeth in a dental lab. The process takes about two weeks – a lot shorter than the six-month-long process of getting implants. During a second appointment, the dentist attaches the bridge, restoring the patient’s smile.

The benefits of replacing missing teeth with bridges include:

  • Not needing oral surgery to install
  • Taking less time to replace missing teeth with bridges
  • Restoring the appearance and function of lost teeth
  • Not needing special care
  • Being more affordable than implants

The downsides of bridges especially when compared to implants include:

  • Not preventing bone tissue loss that occurs when teeth fall out
  • Not lasting as long as implants. On average, they last about 10 years

Either option works great

Implants and bridges are two options you should explore if you have missing teeth. Give us a call or visit our Kennewick clinic to learn more about the ways we can replace your lost teeth.

Request an appointment here: https://www.gledhilldental.com or call Gledhill Dental at (509) 800-8410 for an appointment in our Kennewick office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Dental Bridges in Kennewick, WA.

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