What’s best to replace a tooth: bridge or dental implant?

When it comes time to replace a tooth, you want it done right. The team at Peabody Dental Care is committed to providing you with teeth replacement that will last and look realistic. We take the utmost care to ensure your new teeth appear natural and function just as well as organic teeth.

When it comes to replacement teeth, there are 2 main options: a bridge and a dental implant. We’ll go into the pros and cons of each one, and together we can find the right fit for you. 

Terms to Know

  1. Pontic – This is the clinical term for a false tooth used in dentures or dental bridges.
  2. Abutment – An abutment is a structure that supports a bridge. In dentistry, an abutment may refer to a natural tooth or a small connector post used with dental implants.
  3. Crown –Also known as a “cap”, a crown is a custom restoration that fits over a tooth.
  4. Osseointegration – This is the process in which natural bone tissue fuses with a dental implant. In most cases, osseointegration takes about three to six months.

Bridges 101

A dental bridge    is like a regular bridge for cars – it closes a gap between two points. Dental bridges come in a few different varieties. Here are the most common:

  • Traditional – First, the adjacent teeth are prepared. This involves some removal of enamel. Next, crowns are placed on the teeth next to the gap and the pontics fill in the space. Traditional bridges are an excellent option for those with up to three missing teeth in a row.
  • Cantilever – Similar to a traditional bridge, the cantilever bridge is connected via 1 abutment teeth instead of 2. This might happen if the missing tooth or teeth are in the back of the mouth, leaving only one natural tooth to attach to.
  • Maryland – In some cases, your dentist may be able to place a Maryland bridge. This restoration doesn’t require the alteration of neighboring teeth. Rather, the bridge is held in place by special resin wings, which are bonded to the backs of the adjacent teeth. Maryland bridges are not as strong as traditional bridges – and are therefore often used as a temporary option.

Dental Implants 101

A dental implant is a threaded post made from titanium. It is placed directly into the jaw to restore missing teeth roots. Once the implant has integrated with the surrounding bone, a crown is added. At this point, the implant can be cleaned and used just like a natural tooth.

Unlike bridges, dental implants don’t require alteration of natural teeth. A dental implant is a one-tooth solution to a one-tooth problem.

So, which one should I get?

Both dental implants and bridges have different benefits and uses. Let’s go over why you might choose one over the other. 

    Pros of Choosing a Bridge

  • Does not require oral surgery
  • More affordable
  • Quicker procedure

Pros of Choosing a Dental Implant

  • More secure structurally
  • Can last a lifetime with proper care

Cons of Choosing a Bridge

  • More prone to breaking
  • Will not last as long

Cons of Choosing an Implant

  • More involved, requires minor surgery 
  • May be more expensive upfront

Learn more with our dental experts.

The Peabody Dental Care family is here to answer your questions on bridges on implants. Our team of dental experts is ready to answer any questions you may have on bridges or implants.Speak with one of our lovely staff members today at 831-457-0343. You can also contact us online anytime. We look forward to hearing from you!

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From Dr. Peabody

I love being a dentist, and for 33 years I have tremendously enjoyed providing dental care for you as well as the relationships we’ve formed.  I have decided to retire from the private practice of dentistry so that I can spend more time with my family.

I have interviewed several quality dentists, and I am delighted that I found an outstanding dentist that I know will fit my current patients and the community of Santa Cruz.

With sincere confidence, I am happy to introduce Dr. Martha Catalina Payne. (Dr. Cat)

Please visit her website: https://santacruzdentalartists.com/
to learn more about her and schedule your next appointment with her.

I will work closely with Dr. Cat in this transition so she has a thorough understanding of each patient’s dental needs.

I am confident that you will enjoy Dr. Cat as much as I have enjoyed getting to know her. The team is also quite impressed with her, and you will continue to see them at your reserved dental care visits.

Dr. Guy Peabody DDS