Here at our Charlotte NC dentist office, while dental implants are preferred for replacing missing teeth, sometimes a bridge is a better choice. And with all-ceramic, metal-free dental bridges now available and extremely strong, they look and feel great. How do you know when you might choose a bridge instead of a dental implant?
Reasons to Do a Dental Bridge
- If there are no more than 2 missing teeth in a row.
- When the teeth around the missing space also need dental work due to cavities or other failing dental work, you can fix multiple problems with 1 solution
- If there is a lot of bone and gum tissue missing and it would require a lot of bone and gum grafting to build it back up enough for an implant.
- Replacing an old bridge that is failing.
Reasons to Get a Dental Implant
- If the teeth around the missing one are healthy, don’t grind off healthy enamel!
- If there is plenty of bone to support an implant.
- If you have a high risk of tooth decay, i.e. get cavities a lot, since you can’t get a cavity on an implant.
- If you want the longest-lasting solution. Implants usually last much longer than bridges.
Before-and-After Photos of Dental Bridges
As with all other photos on SmilesbyPayet.com, don’t forget that every single one of these photos is of our patients and our work (unless noted for some specific educational purpose).
Patient #1: Tara
Tara had been unhappy with the old PFM (porcelain-fused-to-metal) dental bridge on her top left teeth for many years, especially as gum recession had left some of the metal edges exposed and unsightly. In addition, she really wanted to brighten her smile overall. We replaced the old bridge and extended a couple teeth farther back to replace another missing tooth.
Patient 2: Delores
Delores came to us to help after part of her old bridge broke (more than 20 years she’d had it!), and since it was right in the front, she was quite self-conscious. After some discussion, we also decided to do a 3/4 porcelain crown on the second-left top tooth to straighten it out and make her whole smile better. With our CEREC Digital Impression system, our lab created a beautiful bridge and crown to give Delores her smile back.
Patient #3: T.Q
T.Q. came to see us a couple years ago because of severe gum disease, which was treated with LANAP Laser Periodontal Therapy. However, one of his left front teeth was so far gone that we were unable to save it, and it had to be extracted. The initial plan was for bone grafting and a dental implant, but despite the skill of our recommended oral surgeon, we were unable to get enough bone for the implant, and T.Q. decided he didn’t want to try again, which mean it was time for a dental bridge. Working in conjunction with one of our amazing dental labs, we were able to give T.Q. a great smile again, and I”m sure you’ll agree, it will be difficult for anyone to know he had anything done. That’s our goal – making your smile look so natural that no one can tell it isn’t!