Considering the statistics of tooth loss in the United States, it can be said with confidence that losing one or more natural teeth is a fact of life. Even if you are good about looking after your teeth and going for regularly scheduled check-ups, tooth decay or accidental trauma can still claim the life of one or more of your pearly whites. When this happens, New Jersey residents face a choice between two technologies… dental implants or conventional dental bridges. In this four-part article series, we spoke to an experienced dental implant specialist in New Jersey about which teeth replacement technology serves patients best in the short, medium and long term.
What are Dental Implants?
Dental implants are slim titanium screws that are used to replace the roots of a missing tooth or teeth. By mimicking the function of natural tooth roots, they are able to provide a sturdy foundation for a replacement tooth crown, which is made from highly aesthetic and durable ceramic materials. In the case of rampant tooth loss, as is a result of gum disease, a dental implant procedure known as the “All-On-4” can be done to provide New Jersey residents with a complete set of non-removable teeth in as little as a single day. In this article series, however, we shall be focusing on the advantages of dental implants over conventional bridges, which are typically used to replace single missing teeth and not the entire dental arch as is the case with the “All-On-4”.
What are Conventional Bridges?
“Conventional bridges are devices that make use of the two adjacent healthy teeth to support a replacement crown that fits snugly in the gap left bare by the missing tooth,” explains the dental implant specialist in New Jersey. “They are essentially a series of three or more crowns that have been bonded together. It’s important to note that, unlike dental implants, conventional bridges don’t replace the roots of a missing tooth or teeth.”
How Do They Compare?
Now that you have a better idea of what dental implants and crowns are, let’s take a closer look at how they compare and why it is that dental implant specialists in New Jersey typically recommend the former over the latter…
The first and most important difference between dental implants and conventional bridges is that implants replace the entire structure of the tooth, from the root to the crown. Bridges only replace the visible portion of the tooth: the crown. This has a number of ramifications for the patient, starting with the overall feel of the restoration. One of New Jersey residents’ key complaints about bridges is that they don’t feel natural. This causes persistent consciousness of the replacement tooth.
“The sensation can be like having something stuck between your teeth,” explains the dental implant specialist in New Jersey. “You are constantly aware of something unnatural and annoying in your mouth. Sores can actually develop as a result of the tongue constantly probing and exploring the bridge. It can be uncomfortable and distracting.”
Dental implants, on the other hand, are rooted in the jaw just like natural teeth and as a result, they feel far more natural. “Patients tend to forget about their dental implant and carry on with their daily lives as if they never lost a tooth in the first place,” says the “All-On-4” specialist. “This is exactly the kind of outcome we want to achieve when replacing missing teeth… we want our patients to feel extremely comfortable.”
Stay Tuned for Part 2
To read more about how dental implants compare with conventional dental bridges for the replacement of missing teeth, stay tuned for the second installment of this four-part article series.
Jack De Richards is a science writer who regularly works with well-known dental implant specialist in New Jersey, oral surgeons and prosthodontists to deliver the latest news and information on dental science & all-on-4 procedure to the public.
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