Dental Implants vs Bridges: How to Know What’s Best for You
Should you get a dental implant or a bridge? To ensure you make the right choice, you need to know these facts, pros, and cons about each.
How Dental Implants Work
A dental implant is basically an artificial tooth root, made from titanium, that is anchored in place of a missing tooth.
A temporary protective cover screw is placed on the implant while it fuses with the jawbone (a process called osseointegration).
This process can take up to six months to complete but creates an incredibly stable, durable prosthetic. After completed osseointegration, the protective cover is replaced by a temporary crown.
This serves as a template around which the gum grows and shapes itself in a natural way. The process is completed when the temporary crown is replaced by a permanent crown.
How Dental Bridges Work
A dental bridge is in some ways less invasive and other ways more invasive than a dental implant. Unlike implants, bridges do not replace a tooth root.
Rather, a bridge uses one or more surrounding teeth as a support on which to attach a crown that can fill the missing tooth space.
The treatment process is not nearly as long as the implant process (which requires osseointegration); though in some ways it is more invasive because it requires the permanent alteration of adjacent teeth to support the bridge.
As the name implies, a dental bridge literally bridges the gap between teeth resulting from a missing tooth.
The restoration therefore must be anchored to one or more adjacent teeth, which must first be filed down in order to function as a support.
The Cost of Implants vs Bridges
Oftentimes cost is ultimately the deciding factor when it comes to selecting a treatment option. And in the case of dental implants vs dental bridges, cost can be an important factor.
Dental implantation is one of the most long term beneficial dental treatments, with costs ranging from $3999.00 AUD for a single tooth implant to $16,000 for a jaw where all teeth are replaced with an all teeth on four solution.