There are a number of options that we have available to replace missing teeth, and in this post we’ll review a few of the most common ones that we offer in our practice.
Why are there missing teeth?
Before we can suggest a solution for missing teeth, we need to understand why the teeth were lost in the first place. If the teeth were lost due to trauma or decay, the options may be different compared to a situation where someone lost teeth due to periodontal disease (gum disease). If someone does have a history of tooth loss related to gum disease, it’s important that we treat the gum disease as well because we don’t want the condition to progress and then weaken other teeth.
How many missing teeth?
Another factor we consider is the number of missing teeth. Different treatment options exist depending upon the number of teeth we are trying to replace.
Option to replace missing teeth:
- Dental implants – dental implants are the gold-standard of modern dental care. We can use dental implants to replace single teeth, multiple teeth, or even all of someone’s teeth. Often the key to having treatment with dental implants has to do with having enough bone to have implants placed; fortunately we are able to place bone grafts in many situations which helps replace some of a patient’s missing bone.
- Dental bridges – a dental bridge is used where a person is missing one to three or four teeth, and we use the adjacent teeth to anchor in a fixed bridge. You can learn more about fixed bridges here.
- Removable dentures -removable dentures come in two types — removable partial dentures and full dentures. We use removable partial dentures for patients who are missing too many teeth for a bridge, but have enough strong teeth left to hold on a removable prosthesis. For patients who are missing all of their teeth, we can fabricate a full denture.