Are you struggling to decide between a dental implant and a bridge for your missing tooth? This is a common dilemma faced by many patients at Black Hills Area Dental. In this blog, we’ll take a comprehensive look at both options, helping you make an informed decision.

Understanding Dental Implants

Dental implants have become increasingly popular in recent years due to their durability and natural appearance. A dental implant consists of a titanium post that is surgically inserted into the jawbone, acting as an artificial root. This is then topped with a custom-made crown, which matches the color and shape of your surrounding teeth. Unlike bridges, dental implants do not rely on neighboring teeth for support, making them a long-lasting and independent solution.

The Benefits and Drawbacks of Dental Implants

The main advantage of a dental implant is its ability to mimic a natural tooth both functionally and aesthetically. It allows you to eat, speak, and smile with confidence, knowing your implant is secure. Dental implants are also the only tooth replacement that actually stops the progression of bone loss that occurs when an individual is missing teeth. However, the process of getting a dental implant is more invasive and requires a longer healing period than a bridge. Additionally, not everyone is a suitable candidate for dental implants. Factors such as bone density, oral health, and lifestyle habits can affect eligibility.

Exploring Dental Bridges

A dental bridge, on the other hand, is a non-surgical solution that fills the gap left by a missing tooth or several missing teeth in a row. It consists of a false tooth, known as a pontic, which is held in place by two crowns attached to the adjacent teeth. This creates a ‘bridge’ across the gap. Dental bridges are a quicker and less invasive solution than implants, making them a popular choice for many patients.

The Pros and Cons of Dental Bridges

Dental bridges offer the advantage of a faster and simpler procedure compared to implants. They can be a great solution for those who are not candidates for implants or prefer to avoid surgery. However, bridges rely on the strength of the neighboring teeth and may not last as long as implants. The process of affixing a bridge to the surrounding teeth also requires those teeth to be reshaped, which involves the removal of a significant amount of enamel. They also require a specific cleaning routine to maintain the health of the supporting teeth.

Schedule a Consultation Today

At Black Hills Area Dental, we understand how important your smile is to you. Dr. Bart Samuelson and his team are dedicated to helping you make the best decision for your oral health and lifestyle. Whether you’re leaning towards a dental implant or a bridge, we’re here to provide expert guidance and care. Contact us at (605) 348-4657 to schedule a consultation today and take the first step towards restoring your smile.