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Dental implants vs bridge is a question many patients are faced with when attempting to replace a lost tooth or multiple teeth. The traditional dental bridge was the main dental procedure used by dentists for a very long time to replace missing teeth. As dental implants have become popular due to long term success rates the traditional dental bridge has become in many people’s mind the lessor alternative. Dental implants vs bridge is an interesting scenario as they both achieve the same thing but in different ways. The dental implants vs bridge debate is one that many of us will face in our lives. Below are some facts about both to help with your decision.

Dental Implants Vs Bridge Procedure

Steps For A Dental Bridge

During the first visit to your dentist for the fabrication of a dental bridge, the teeth surrounding the missing tooth are prepared to accept a dental crown. The preparation involves removing the outer layer of teeth to allow for a dental crown to be placed over top them. Next, dental impressions of the teeth are taken, which give the dental lab technician a precise dental model from which the dental bridge, pontic (fake tooth between the dental crowns), and dental crowns will be fabricated. Your dentist will create a temporary dental bridge for you to wear to protect the exposed teeth and gums while the dental bridge is being made. This generally takes about 2 weeks.

At the second visit, your temporary bridge will be removed, the temporary cement will be cleaned off the teeth, and the new porcelain or metal bridge will be checked and adjusted, as necessary, to achieve an ideal fit. Depending on how extensive the dental bridge is multiple visits may be needed to check the fit of the metal framework and ensure the bite is correct. This is dependent on each individual’s case as metal can distort as well as teeth moving ever so slightly during time in between visits. If the fit is acceptable to the dentist, the dental bridge will then be cemented permanently in place. In the discussion of dental implants vs bridge, a traditional bridge is placed in only one way (cemented) while a dental implant can be placed in 2 different ways (screw retained or cemented).

Steps For A Dental Implant

Initial Consultation. At this initial appointment, your dentist will complete a thorough dental examination, including all necessary x rays, and then take dental impressions of your teeth. After your dentist gathers all the necessary preliminary information, your dentist will talk with you about the recommended treatment plan. You may also discuss at this time whether or not there is a need for a bone graft. At this visit, you can ask about the dental implants vs bridge discussion. Your dentist will happily review the positives and negatives with you.

Bone Grafting And Teeth Removal. If the tooth needs to be extracted, your dentist will evaluate the bone density and quality and decide if a bone graft is necessary. The bone graft will add 4-6 months generally to the time line. This extra time gives your bone time to heal properly and add the new bone structure.

Dental Implant Placement. Once healing has taken place you will be ready for the dental implant placement. The procedure generally takes about 1-2 hours and completed under anesthesia. Once the dental implant is placed, you will need approximately 6 months for healing to take place and the dental implant to integrate into the bone (this process is called osseointegration).

Healing Cap And Temporary Dental Crown. With the dental implant fully integrated in the bone, your dentist will attach what is called a healing collar to the top of the dental implant. This healing collar will allow the gum tissue to form around the implant in a natural looking way. The healing collar is simply a round piece of metal that keeps the gum tissue away from top of implant. The healing cap stays on for about 7-14 days. In some cases a temporary dental crown is fabricated as well at this visit.

Abutment Placement. The healing cap will be removed and a dental implant abutment will be replace it. This abutment will be where the new dental crown will attach (either thru a screw or cement). Once the abutment is in place, your dentist will take a dental impression and send it off to the dental laboratory for fabrication of your new dental crown.

Permanent Dental Crown Placement. The dental implant and dental crown should be a permanent fixture without the possibility of tooth decay forming over time like a traditional dental crown or dental bridge.

Dental Implants Vs Bridge Maintenance

This is where a dental implant will shine in the debate of dental implants vs bridge. A single dental implant will be cleaned just like your natural teeth. This means you can floss around the tooth just like a natural tooth. A dental bridge since it is one longer piece encompassing multiple teeth you will not be able to use regular floss. You will need to use what is called a floss threader. This will allow you to get under each part of the dental bridge and effectively clean around the areas of the dental bridge. This can be an issue for some patients with dexterity issues.

Dental Implants Vs Bridge Cost

The dental implant will require more time (at least 6-7 months in best case) to allow for each step to be completed and healed properly. The dental implant tends to cost more overall especially if bone grafting is involved. In my opinion, dental implants vs bridge cost will be up to the patient. Time in some cases is just as important as the financial factor.

Dental Implants Vs Bridge Pros And Cons

Dental Implants Vs Bridge Las Vegas Marielaina Perrone DDSDental Implant Positives

-Surrounding Teeth Unaffected. With a dental implant, there is no need to shave down possibly healthy tooth structure in adjacent teeth as there would be in a traditional dental bridge.

-Success Rate And Durability. Dental implants should with proper care last a lifetime and have a better than 98% success rate.

-Bone Loss Prevention. With a dental implant in place, your bone structure will remain as is and not resorb or break down. This is what happens when a tooth is missing in an area of the mouth

Dental Implant Negatives

-Surgery Required. A big negative in the dental implants vs bridge debate. This is especially true of those with dental phobia.

-Healing Time Needed. As mentioned above a minimum of 6-7 months are needed in the best case scenario to complete a dental implant procedure from start to finish.

-Financial Expense. There is generally a slightly higher fee for a single dental implant vs bridge and could go even higher if other procedures are needed like a bone graft.

Dental Bridge Positives

-Permanent. The dental bridge will be cemented in place and will never be removed to clean unless your dentist finds an issue.

-Simpler and Quicker Dental Procedure. Generally takes only 2 dental visits and can usually be completed in about 2 weeks time. This can be a huge positive for many in the dental implants vs bridge discussion.

Dental Bridge Negatives

Dental Hygiene More Difficult. With a dental bridge, you must brush and floss under and around the false tooth. Using floss threader as mentioned above may be difficult for some. Dental hygiene maintenance is a must if there is any chance of long term success for a dental bridge.

-Lifespan Shorter. A dental bridge generally lasts about 7-10 years. Some dental bridges can last longer and some can fail sooner. This is due to the wear and tear on adjacent teeth (these teeth remain susceptible to periodontal disease and tooth decay. Either tooth decay or periodontal disease can weaken support for the dental bridge.

-Surrounding Teeth Affected. A dental bridge requires support from the surrounding teeth that are used to hold the artificial tooth in place. If these teeth are not strong enough to have dental crowns, a dental bridge might not even be possible.

Dental Implants Vs Bridge Conclusion

Choosing dental implants vs bridge can be a difficult decision. Your dentist will help guide you through the process and help you make an educated dental implants vs bridge decision that is best for your smile. It is important to maintain regular dental visits no matter which side you choose in the dental implants vs bridge decision.





Dental Bridges are fabricated out of 2 or more dental crowns covering teeth on either side of the missing tooth (there will be a gap present). Dental bridges literally just bridge the gap created my at least one missing tooth but can be multiple missing teeth the dental bridge is replacing.

Bridges are made up of 2 or more dental crowns for the teeth on either side of the space . These 2 or more anchoring crowns are referred to as anchoring abutments. A false tooth or teeth is located in between. These false teeth are referred to as dental pontics and can be fabricated from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of any of these dental materials. Dental bridges can supported by either natural teeth or dental implants.

Benefits Of Dental Bridges

Dental Bridges can do the following for you:

-Restore your smile to its fullest potential by replacing lost teeth

-Restore your ability to properly chew and speak

-Maintain and restore the shape of your face

-Allow for even distribution of the forces in your bite properly by replacing missing teeth

-Prevent remaining teeth from drifting out of position. If this happens more damage can occur as your bite changes

Types of Dental Bridges Available

Traditional dental bridges involve fabricating a dental crown for the tooth or implant on either side of the missing tooth, with a dental pontic in between. Traditional dental bridges are easily the most common type of dental bridge and are made of either porcelain fused to metal(PFM) or ceramics.

Cantilever dental bridges are prescribed when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth. This is not a very common with the addition of dental implants to a dentists arsenal and is not recommended in the back of the mouth where the forces can cause damage to the dental bridge as well as surrounding teeth.

Maryland bonded dental bridges (also referred to as a dental resin bonded bridges) can be made of porcelain, porcelain fused to metal(PFM), or plastic resin teeth and gums supported by a metal or porcelain framework. Metal or porcelain wings often on just one side of the bridge are bonded to your existing teeth.

Dental Implant Supported Bridge – implant supported dental bridges can be used when you have more than one tooth missing. Instead of being supported by dental crowns or metal frameworks, this type of dental bridge is supported by dental implants. Generally, 1 (one) dental implant is placed for every missing tooth, and this series of dental implants holds the bridge in place. However, the bridge may consist of a pontic suspended between two implant-supported crowns if placing one implant for every lost tooth is not possible.

Marielaina Perrone DDS Dental Bridges

Office Visits For A Dental Bridge

During the initial visit to your dentist for getting a dental bridge, the abutment teeth are prepared to accept a dental crown. The preparation involves re-contouring these teeth by removing a portion of enamel to allow room for a crown to be placed over them. Next, dental impressions of the teeth are made, which give the lab technician a model from which the bridge, pontic, and crowns will be made. Your dentist will fabricate a temporary bridge for you to wear to protect the exposed teeth and gums while the bridge is being made.

During the second visit, your temporary bridge will be removed, the temporary cement will be cleaned off the teeth, and the new porcelain or metal bridge will be checked and adjusted, as necessary, to achieve an ideal fit. Multiple visits may be required to check the fit of the metal framework and bite. This is dependent on each individual’s case as metal can distort as well as teeth moving ever so slightly. If the fit is acceptable to the dentist, the dental bridge will then be cemented in place.

Dental Bridges Cost

The overall cost of a dental bridge varies depending on the type of bridge selected and the materials used by your dentist. Dental insurance, if you have it, will typically pay a percentage of the fee for your dental bridge depending on the individual dental plan.

How Long Will My Dental Bridge Last?

Dental bridges can last five to 15 years and sometimes even longer. With a good oral hygiene regimen as well as regular dental checkups, it is not unusual for dental bridges to be still going strong after 10 years. It will depend on each individual in the end.

Eating With Dental Bridges

Eating should be easier once the dental bridge is in place. This is because you will no longer have a gap for food to get trapped into.

Caring For Dental Bridges

Following a good oral hygiene regimen of brushing, flossing, and rinsing along with regular dental examinations with dental cleanings is all you will need to do. The better dental hygiene you maintain the better chance of that dental bridge lasting a long time. Flossing will be more of a challenge as you need to thread the floss under the bridge to keep it clean. Your dentist will recommend floss threaders to use. This will allow you to get under the bridge and properly keep it clean and healthy.

Dental Bridges Conclusion

Your dentist can close the gaps in your smile with one of the 4 types dental bridges to restore your smile. With so many types of dental bridges available, you can feel confident that your dentist has an appropriate solution for your missing teeth.



Over time, our smiles change and may begin lose their youthful appearance. These changes can include a change in smile esthetics due to  loss of teeth. Teeth may be lost as a result of trauma, periodontal disease, fracturing, infection, and tooth decay. In the past, the only options for tooth replacement were a permanent cemented dental bridge or  a removable tooth or teeth set into some form of denture. Luckily, that has changed with the widespread use of dental implants. Dental Implants give the dentist and patient a better way to restore that smile and return it to its youthful appearance.

What Are Dental Implants?

Dental implants have been researched and improved upon for quite some time now. Implants have been shown to be safe and successful (over 90%success rate) for the long term replacement of missing teeth.  A dental implant is an artificial tooth root that is placed into your jaw to support restorations that resemble a tooth or group of teeth.  Dental implants can be used in a variety of situations including replacement of a single tooth, as support for a dental bridge, or as support for a denture (allowing it to be more comfortable and secure). Dental implants are a major part of cosmetic dentistry today. Only you and your dentist will know you have dental implants.

Best Options For Dental Implants

Dental implants, like most of dentistry, is highly personalized. The treatment plan will depend upon how many teeth are missing as well as the available quantity and quality of bone present. Below you will find some of the situations where dental implants can replace lost teeth:

Loss Of A Single Tooth. The replacement of a single tooth with an implant can be done quickly and easily if there is adequate bone support. At one time, replacing a tooth meant wearing a removable appliance (commonly called a “flipper”) or removing natural tooth structure from surrounding teeth to create a fixed bridge of dental crowns. The flipper can be quite uncomfortable to wear and may affect speech and taste. The dental bridge, while a good option, may compromise the support teeth by having them do the work of the lost tooth, and by increasing the possibility of tooth decay over time. The long term success rate is lowered due to difficulties in cleaning under and around the bridge. A single tooth dental implant, when completed properly, will last a lifetime. The dental implant will function and look just like your lost natural tooth.

Loss Of Multiple Teeth. When missing multiple teeth in a single area, dental implants can be used to form a fixed bridge. The beauty of this arrangement is stability and the ability not to affect the natural teeth in any way.

Replacing All Teeth. In the past, the only way to restore a full dentition was to fabricate a removable denture that snapped into the implants. With newer techniques, dental implants have the ability to restore natural function and esthetics  and stay fixed tightly in the mouth. The new technique used is an all on four dental implants denture. Four dental implants are strategically placed to allow for a more secure, comfortable, immovable denture.

Dental Implants Conclusion

It has long been known that a full complement of teeth conveys beauty and youth. When teeth are missing we smile less and and are less confident in ourselves. Dental implants are a way to restore that youthful smile and confidence.


Las Vegas Dental Implants Marielaina Perrone DDS

Dental Implants – Solution for Tooth Loss

In today’s world, when a tooth is lost, most of us would like it replaced permanently with another tooth. The options for patients varies among different cases and situations. In the case of a lost or missing tooth, there have been traditionally several ways to restore it. The removable flipper, a cemented 3 tooth bridge (fixed bridge), or dental implants. If you have ever seen or worn a flipper, basically a removable retainer with a tooth attached, you know that it is not the best option. A fixed bridge may be necessary if there is inadequate bone or health issues deeming implants a higher risk. Dental implants have become the optimum choice, basically replacing the tooth with a whole new tooth.

Traditional Dental Bridge

A traditional dental bridge, utilizes one or more adjacent teeth for stability. A bridge is anchored to healthy teeth at either end. With a traditional dental bridge, the  tooth behind and in front of the missing tooth are trimmed down, to accommodate the fitting of crowns.  The bridge usually consists of 3 crowns fused together, and is custom fabricated by a laboratory technician.

There are three types of Fixed Dental Bridges:

-Traditional bridges involve fabricating a crown for the tooth on either side of the missing tooth, with a pontic (fake tooth) fused in between. Traditional bridges are the most common type of bridge and are generally made of either porcelain fused to metal or all porcelain.

-Cantilever bridges are used when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth. The cantilever extends out over the missing tooth space without end support. This type of bridge can cause rocking and damage to the tooth or teeth it is attached to.

-Maryland bridges (also referred to as a resin-bonded bridge) are made of plastic or porcelain teeth and gums supported by a metal framework structure. Metal wings on each side of the bridge are adhesively bonded to your existing teeth. The metal can show through and hamper cosmetics.

Dental Implants

A dental implant is essentially a new root for your new tooth. The implant is surgically placed into your jaw, the bone grows around it and actually sticks to it. The process is called osseointegration. This is what gives the implant it’s strength. It is actually stronger than a natural tooth. The best part, is you do not have to disrupt the surrounding teeth, and it will never decay.

Las Vegas Dental Implants Marielaina Perrone DDSPros and Cons

Dental implants may be less noticeable and provide a more natural cosmetic appearance.

-Dental implants can be flossed, brushed , and treated like a normal tooth, bridges require more complex hygiene maintenance.

Dental implants provide more efficient chewing than bridges, which may chip, break, or shift.

-Dental implants have a 98% success rate.

.-Bridges require healthy, stable teeth on either side of the missing tooth or teeth for placement. This is not required in the case of dental implants.

-The teeth to which a traditional bridge is attached are permanently affected by the procedure of placing crowns on them. With dental implants, adjacent teeth are not affected or prepared in any way. If one tooth to which a bridge is attached develops problems, the entire bridge will likely need to be replaced.

Dental implants are generally a bit more expensive than bridges.

Dental implants can fail. They may not integrate with bone, may develop periodontal disease, or may break.

Dental Implants generally take a few months from start to finish of treatment, whereas a dental bridge can be completed in about 2 weeks.

Longevity

The average life span of a bridge, with proper oral hygiene, is eight to 15 years. Dental implants are considered permanent, although any crowns or bridges attached to them are subject to normal wear and tear and may need to be replaced at some point. Proper oral hygiene is crucial to the success of any restorative dental work.

Conclusion

In today’s modern dentistry, dental implants are quickly becoming the first choice for many. The choice of an implant has become more affordable, and more successful. Life is all about choices. The dentist can give the patient the pros and cons of each procedure and allow the patient to make the most educated decision they can.  The procedure  you choose will solve the problem of a missing tooth, in the way that works best for you.