Dental Implant Vs. Crown-&-Bridge

Posted on Jun 14, 2017 by William J. Claiborne, DDS MS

For those who have lost one or several teeth, adults have often gravitated to a crown and bridge combination. However, that option is becoming ‘second fiddle’ to the lifetime tooth replacement solution of Dental Implants.

Dental Implants are made from titanium, which is a material that biologically bonds with living bone. Implants that are properly selected, placed and maintained are designed to last a lifetime. An implant will never get a cavity, need a root canal, or create risk for surrounding natural teeth. Dental Implants are the closest thing to the look, feel and function of natural teeth.

When it comes to choosing a Dental Implant or a Crown-&-Bridge to replace a missing tooth or teeth, the only deterrent seems the price tag. However, when comparing the overall, longterm expense to the initial costs, implants stand out as a far better value.

First, an implant does not rely on neighboring teeth for support, as does a crown-&-bridge combination. A bridge must be attached to adjacent teeth on both sides for support. This is done by crowning otherwise healthy natural teeth that are attached to the bridge. Once a tooth is crowned (or ‘capped’), it will always need a crown.

A Dental Implant does not rely on the support of adjacent teeth. It is anchored by the jaw bone, having the same, sturdy foundation as natural tooth roots once had. And, one implant can often support one, two or more teeth. Since the cost of implant treatment is largely based on the number of implants placed, this keeps treatment costs more manageable .

Another advantage of Dental Implants over Crown-&-Bridge is in the prevention of bone loss. When natural tooth roots are removed from the jaw bone, the bone begins to decline in mass. This process is known as resorption. This can be visible when the area of gum tissue under (or above) the bridge diminishes. Eventually, a smile can reveal a gap between the bridge and the gums.

As the bone declines, the teeth supporting the bridge are at greater risk. On average, the next teeth to be lost are teeth adjacent to areas of missing teeth. Because Dental Implants recreate the presence of tooth roots, they help to halt bone resorption. And, since implants are held by the jaw, they restore comfortable and stable biting and chewing.

We urge patients to look past the initial costs to replace teeth and assess the lasting advantages of Dental Implants. They are actually a much wiser investment, not to mention to many benefits they provide.

If you have considered replacing teeth with Dental Implants, call 828-254-9440 to schedule a consultation.

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