There are a number of reasons you can permanently lose your teeth, including accidents and dental issues. While you shouldn’t be ashamed to have missing teeth, there are many ways that it can affect a person.
For a start it alters the aesthetics of how you smile and speak. This can affect self-confidence. Losing your molars (back teeth) also makes it difficult to chew food. Having one tooth can also affect every other teeth in your mouth because they move around without the other tooth holding them in place.
No matter the reason you lose your teeth, the good news is it is possible to replace them. Below are some of the most common tooth replacement options available.
The dental implant is the standard upon which every other tooth replacement option is judged. Implants look more natural than other options and tend to be more stable and have longer lifespans than other choices. Dental implants also stimulate the bone left underneath teeth, preventing bone loss and the facial changes that causes. Dental implants may be more expensive but they do last much longer. A good implant can even last a lifetime. This makes dental implants a cost-effective option in the long term. You may need a bone grafting during dental implant placement process.
Tooth-Supported Fixed Bridge
This is another common tooth replacement method where healthy teeth are deliberately damaged. It grinds away at the healthy teeth next to the missing one before implanting a bridge across the teeth to support the crown. The natural bone left under the tooth-supported bridge can deteriorate over time with nothing stimulating it, which can alter the way your face and smile look.
Removable Partial Dentures
Much like full dentures, partial dentures could cause issues with comfort and stability. They might also impact how you speak and what you can eat. As is the case of other non-implants, it could lead the bone under the tooth to deteriorate and damage your face and smile over time.
This bridge option – also called a Maryland-bonded bridge – wings made of metal or porcelain are placed on a bridge and then bonded to existing teeth. This is typically better than partial dentures but doesn’t last as long as dermal implants. Once again, this treatment can cause the bone under the dental bridge to deteriorate and affect your smile and face.
Complete dentures are considered a low-cost alternative, but the costs of replacing them quickly add up. Dentures are also awkward at times as they can click when you speak, eat, laugh, or cough. They are sometimes uncomfortable and can affect how much you can taste food as well. Much like partial dentures, complete dentures don’t stimulate the bone underneath, leaving it to deteriorate and potentially affect your face and smile.
The Costs Involved With Replacing Missing Teeth
The main factor most people will consider when replacing their missing teeth is the cost. When it comes to costs, dental implants are considered to be the most expensive option because they require surgery. This means they can cost anywhere up to $6,000. Bridges tend to be much cheaper by comparison.
A partial denture might set you back just a few hundred dollars, but the price of dentures can be affected by the size of the denture and where it’s going. They can reach prices of several thousand dollars. Full dentures are even more expensive and can cost as much as dental implants in some cases.