If you have lost a tooth to decay or an accident, there are several reasons why you should have it replaced. There are also multiple options for tooth replacement for you to choose from. At Platinum Dental Care, we believe every missing tooth should be replaced, so every smile can be complete. Not only does tooth replacement help restore your confidence in your appearance, but it will also help prevent you from losing more teeth in the future.
What Happens When a Tooth is Lost
If you assumed the worst outcome of losing a tooth is having slightly less grinding surfaces to help you chew your food, think again! Losing a tooth can lead to a number of problems in your mouth and jaw. It starts with changes to your biting and chewing patterns, which can lead to you favoring one side of the jaw. This may cause muscle fatigue or harm the delicate balance of your temporomandibular joints.
Furthermore, a missing tooth can destabilize the teeth surrounding it. When there is a gap in the jaw, the adjacent teeth will slowly begin to drift into that open space. Soon multiple teeth will shift their positions enough to upset the alignment of your bite. A misaligned bite can lead to further difficulty chewing, changes in your appearance, and may make teeth more prone to damage. For example, teeth that may have once worked together in perfect harmony, now crack against each other each time you bite down. This weakens enamel and makes it more prone to decay and cracking.
Lost Tooth – Lost Confidence
Most patients will admit that a lost tooth diminishes their confidence and comfort levels. The gap may be visible when you speak and smile, and it may also affect your speech. If you are less inclined to speak freely and smile, this can make a formerly outgoing person feel more inhibited and negatively affect your quality of life.
Options for Tooth Replacement
We offer two choices for tooth replacement at Platinum Dental: dental bridges and dental implants.
A dental bridge resembles the structure it is named for, with the two healthy teeth surrounding your gap forming the sides of the bridge, and a prosthetic tooth connecting them. The bridge is permanently attached to the healthy adjacent teeth, much the way a crown is attached. The prosthetic tooth sits over the gap and restores your full range of chewing and speaking patterns. This structure is designed to fit harmoniously in your mouth, and will look very much like a healthy natural tooth.
Bridges prevent negative changes to your teeth by stabilizing the teeth surrounding the site of your lost tooth, so your teeth will not shift and upset your alignment. Dental bridges are very durable, but will need maintenance and monitoring, much like any other form of dental work.
A dental implant replaces a natural tooth both above and below the gum line. A biocompatible titanium base is implanted in the jaw, where it will slowly fuse with the bone, much like a natural tooth root. When it has fully healed and is stable, a dental crown is permanently attached to replace the function and appearance of the missing tooth.
Which Option is Right for Me?
Each option has unique benefits. Dental bridges are a faster and less expensive solution, but require more maintenance long term. Dental implants, however, feel and act more like natural teeth and tend to be more comfortable and require less (if any) maintenance over time. Dental implants also prevent bone loss in the jaw, which makes them the favorite choice for long term health.
Tooth Replacement Dentist in Toronto
Speak with one of our friendly and knowledgeable dentists at Platinum Dental Care to learn more about your tooth replacement options. We’re here to help.