Studies show that more than 100 million Americans have at least one missing tooth. This is a matter of serious concern in the dental community, since missing teeth can lead to a lifetime of serious oral health issues. Fortunately, there are many ways to address this problem, including crowns, bridges, dentures, and dental implants in Richardson. Each offers its own set of advantages and considerations.
Crowns and Bridges
These treatments have been around for many years. Over that time, they’ve helped to restore millions of damaged and missing teeth, However, both crowns and bridges have certain limitations. Crowns rely on the base of the tooth being strong enough to support the appliance. Bridges require healthy teeth on both sides of the restoration.
This means that neither crowns or bridges is the best option for restoring multiple teeth all at once. Instead, this role is typically filled by traditional adhesive dentures.
This is perhaps the oldest form of tooth restoration on earth. Dentures have been around in one form or another for well over a thousand years. Modern versions are comfortable, safe, and relatively effective. They’ve helped millions of people to lead healthier, more fulfilling lives.
Unfortunately, traditional adhesive dentures have serious drawbacks. Their biggest limitation is the fact that they can come loose unless the patient uses considerable caution when speaking, eating, or performing other routine tasks. Because of these shortcomings, dental implants are rapidly becoming the treatment of choice for restorative dentistry.
Look at a diagram of a healthy tooth and you will see a root-like structure at its base. This is what gives natural teeth their inherent strength. Dental implants emulate this design, which is what makes them different from adhesive dentures, crowns, and bridges.
The first step in the implant process is for the dentist to place a small titanium post in the patient’s jaw. This is followed by a waiting period of about three months, during which the surrounding bones fuse to the post. The final restoration can take the form of a single crown or an implant-supported prosthetic such as a bridge or denture.
Unlike older adhesive-based therapies, the restored teeth are supported by titanium fixtures that literally become part of the patient’s body. This gives implants a degree of strength and permanence unmatched by other forms of treatment.
All types of tooth restoration require reasonable self-care on the patient’s part. This includes brushing and flossing, eating a healthy diet low in sugar and high in essential nutrients, and seeing your dentist for regular cleanings and exams. It’s also important to stay physically active, get plenty of rest, and manage the effects of stress on your well-being. Slipping back into old habits many undo the benefits of restorative therapy.
Modern dentistry offers a range of choices when it comes to getting back what time or circumstances has taken away. Use the information in this post to discuss your restoration options with your dentist in Richardson during your upcoming appointment. You’ll soon find yourself with plenty of reasons to smile.
About the Author
Dr. Meredith Davis earned her DDS degree from the Texas A&M University Baylor College of Dentistry, graduating in the top 20% of her class. She combines professional skill with personal attention to provide the best possible treatment experience for her patients. You can reach her office online or by calling (972) 231-4876.