If you lose one or more teeth then you’ll need to think about ways to replace them. There are three main methods of tooth replacement which are to use dental bridges, partial or full dentures, or to have dental implants. Nowadays more and more patients are opting to have dental implants in Basingstoke, realising this can often be the best choice. If you’re still unsure as to which method would work best for you, it’s worth reading this quick comparison of all three types of tooth replacement.
Partial or Full Dentures
Partial dentures replace some of the teeth in the upper or lower jaws, while a full denture replaces all the teeth in the upper or lower jaws. This method of tooth replacement has been used for many decades and is still reasonably popular due to the ease of treatment. It’s also the least expensive option of tooth replacement, but it’s not necessarily the best.
Dentures rest on the gums and rely heavily on retention in the mouth to keep them in position. This is provided by either covering up the roof of the mouth for an upper denture, or using the bony ridge that used to support teeth to hold a lower denture in position. Partial dentures can have clasps that fit around existing natural teeth or precision attachments that help hold them in place.
Once teeth are extracted then the shape of the mouth begins to change. The bony ridges that used to support the teeth soon begin to flatten as the bone is gradually reabsorbed by the body. This creates problems for denture retention and as a result dentures can become increasingly loose and ill-fitting. This is often a major problem for denture wearers, and loose dentures can rub on the gums, increasing the rate of bone resorption. Even though it’s possible to remake dentures to fit a little better, the main problem still remains and there is little that can be done about it. Dentures generally need to be remade after three years or so.
A dental bridge consists of crowns that are attached to one or more replacement teeth to create a single, strong unit. Normally the teeth either side of a missing tooth will be ground down and crowned in preparation for a bridge. This type of restoration is more expensive than a denture, but a bridge will usually last approximately 10 years. A well-made bridge can look extremely nice, and might be a good choice if the teeth either side of the missing tooth could do with being crowned. Otherwise your dentist in Basingstoke will have to grind down perfectly healthy teeth to make room for the bridge. This is not ideal, and does mean these teeth will always need crowns, even if you decide to opt for a dental implant at a later date.
Dental implants are the only method of tooth replacement that doesn’t have any negative impact on the surrounding teeth. In fact it’s quite the opposite as dental implants will keep the rest of your teeth in the proper positions and will help prevent bone loss in your jaw. Even though dental implants take a little longer, the results should last for decades or even for life, so it’s the best long-term method of tooth replacement and quite probably the most cost effective.