While many people who lose a tooth are upset about the aesthetic problems that loss represents, there are other issues in play as well. When your mouth is missing a tooth, you can have problems chewing properly, suffer from speech disruptions, and experience difficulties with other teeth as they subtly shift out of alignment. In short, one lost tooth can cause a cascade effect that places your dental health in jeopardy. Dentists typically offer one of two solutions: a bridge or an implant. While implants have grown in popularity in recent years, there is still a powerful case to be made for dental bridges. Today, we’ll take a look at the pros and cons of dental bridges so that you can better understand why and when they are still utilized.
On the Plus Side:
Perhaps the biggest advantage offered by dental bridges is reliability. They are common and have been used for many decades. We have years of evidence to demonstrate that this procedure is safe, and offers a sturdy, strong solution to stabilize a patient’s teeth. Other advantages include:
- Dental bridges are quick to install. On average, they can be installed three times quicker than the new implants – though the exact speed can vary depending upon the patient and the circumstances of the install.
- Bridges tend to cost less than implants. That is an especially important feature for people without comprehensive dental insurance who may be more limited in the options they can afford to choose.
- Dental bridges are simple to install. Unlike implants, there is no surgery required.
- Bridges do not require that your jaw line be healthy. With an implant, jaw health is an important consideration, since the implants are fixed to the bone.
On the Other Hand:
In some areas, however, dental implants may offer a more attractive solution. Here are a few of the potential disadvantages of dental bridges:
- Bridges are typically not as long-lived as implants. Despite their strength, they generally need to be replaced after about ten or fifteen years.
- The true strength of a bridge is dependent upon the strength of the surrounding teeth, since bridges rely on them for support. That can place a strain on healthy teeth in some instances, Moreover, bridges cannot be used in cases where those nearby teeth are weak.
- Conventional bridges can be more difficult to clean and floss. That can leave the anchor teeth more vulnerable to decay and eventual cavities. If that happens, the bridge can become compromised.
It’s easy to see that dental bridges are like most other dental options. They have their place in certain circumstances, and are a less effective option in other cases. They remain a popular and viable solution for patients with missing teeth, and one that most patients can more easily afford.
At Ebenezer Dental, we know how important it is that our patients be as informed as possible about all of the various treatment options available to them. If you’d like to learn more about dental bridges or how the best dentist in midtown Manhattan can help you with your oral health needs, contact us today.