Learn about restorative dentistry from your Rockville dentist.
Missing teeth detract from your appearance and may make it harder to chew and speak clearly. Dr. H. David Allick of White Flint Dental Associates in Rockville, MD, shares information on several tooth replacement options you'll want to consider.
Bridges offer an ideal solution whether you've lost several teeth or just one. Bridges consist of one or more artificial teeth, called pontics, suspended between two crowns on the other end. Crowns are hollow restorations that slide over teeth. Bridges are usually made of porcelain or porcelain-fused-to-metal. Porcelain, a material that closely resembles your natural tooth enamel, offers strength and durability. Bridges eventually wear out and may need to be replaced in about 10 to 15 years.
Both full and partial dentures can help you restore your smile. An upper or lower denture consists of a row of artificial teeth set in a pink base designed to resemble your gums. A good fit is an essential part of the denture process. As your mouth heals and adjusts, several modifications will be needed to ensure that your dentures are comfortable. If you've lost several teeth in a row, you may want to consider partial dentures. These dentures feature tiny hooks that fit over the teeth on either side of the gap.
Dental implants are a good choice if you're looking for a more permanent tooth replacement option. Unlike bridges and dentures, implants replace the roots of your tooth. After the implants are placed in your jawbone, they'll begin to bond to the bone. Bonding ensures that the implant will be able to adequately anchor the crown that will be attached to the top of the crown. Implants also prevent bone loss, a common problem after tooth loss. Although you'll probably never need to replace your implants, you will eventually have to replace your crowns.
Dental implants are often used to replace a single missing tooth, but they can also be used to support an entire upper or lower denture. Implant-supported dentures are supported by six to eight implants placed in strategic locations in your jaw.
Are you ready to replace your missing tooth? Call your family dentist, Dr. Allick of White Flint Dental Associates in Rockville, MD, at (301) 881-6666 to schedule your appointment.