Three Unit Bridges vs. Dental Implants: Beaverton Dental Works Helps Oregon Patients Decide
When a patient makes a decision to replace a missing tooth, they’re making a smart choice for their health. A gap from a missing, extracted or severely damaged tooth can raise the risk for a variety of periodontal and overall health issues, including bone loss, jaw misalignment, accelerated gum disease and compromise of healthier teeth. While the decision to replace a tooth is very clear, the restorative option through which the tooth will be replaced isn’t always so apparent. There a number of dental prosthetic options available, and that can add to patient confusion. The dental professionals at Oregon’s Beaverton Dental Works would like dental prosthetic candidates to understand what options are available to them when filling in a smile gap. Among the most prominent ways to replace a missing tooth are dental implants and three unit bridges. So what are differences when it comes to three unit bridges vs. dental implants, and which is the best option for your needs?
Three unit bridges and dental implants have many differences and some similarities. As both are prosthetic smile restoratives, they are designed to create the appearance of a natural tooth and serve as a structural replacement, which protects the surface of the gum, maintains bite and jaw alignment, and enables the patient to speak, smile, eat and continue their periodontal care without difficulty or apprehension. Both bridges and implants are custom fabricated to look and feel like a natural part of a complete smile, and both can make patients with a missing or damaged tooth feel more secure and confident.
The primary differences between three unit bridges and dental implants are a result of their structure and placement. Three unit bridges are surface prosthetics. They’re held in place by neighboring teeth, which are modified to fit two supporting crowns. The central crown is what replaces the missing tooth. Bridges are commonly formed from composite and layered porcelain, which is custom fabricated to suit and improve the patient’s current smile aesthetic. With proper care bridges will last roughly fifteen years. Patients should be sure to visit for biannual checkups to ensure the bridge is secure and strong or if repair or replacement is needed. Beaverton Dental Works regularly fits patients with three unit bridges, providing a reliable, economical means of replacing a missing tooth.
Dental implants are used to replace one or more teeth. Unlike bridges, which rest on the surface of the gum, implants are surgically placed below the gum line, into the jaw. Once the jaw bone has conformed to the implant, an abutment is used to create the appearance of a natural tooth. Implants are intended to not only appear as natural teeth, but to feel natural as well. They do not require the modification of surrounding teeth and have a very high success rate in patients with varied periodontal needs. With proper care, they may never need to be replaced. Dental implants are a specialty of Beaverton Dental Works, where patients can be fitted with standard and mini dental implants.
If you’re in the Northwest Oregon area, the professionals at Beaverton Dental Works can help you determine whether three unit bridges or dental implants are the right choice for your tooth replacement.
To learn more or to arrange a consultation, visit Beaverton Dental Works’ website: http://www.beavertondentalworks.com or call 503-644-3188.