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May 13 2011

Replacements for Damaged Teeth

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There are a number of problems which can be caused by missing or damaged teeth.The first one to spring to mind is obviously how the teeth will impact upon a person’s looks and therefore their self-esteem. It’s certainly true that damaged or missing teeth can be unattractive. The effects can be far reaching, with remaining teeth moving out of place into the gaps left behind.

Still, appearance is not the only issue involved with missing and damaged teeth. It doesn’t take a dentist to understand that damaged teeth hurt. For this reason it is almost always best to remove damaged teeth rather than leaving them in place.

So when damaged teeth have been removed, what is the best way to deal with the gap left behind? As mentioned the gaps can be as problematic as the damaged teeth since they can cause the other teeth to grow into the gaps. The absence of natural teeth can also cause the jaw bone to become worn away, affecting the shape of the jawline and even the face. This is why a dentist will normally advise that missing teeth are replaced.

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Lost teeth can be replaced using bridges, dentures or dental implants and it is down to a dentist to decide which is the most appropriate for the individual. Dentures can be used when there are three or more missing teeth, bridges when there are two or three and implants when there are one or two. Dental implants are by far and away the most costly, but they last the longest, often a lifetime and have a high success rate.

Dental implants require surgery to be placed and take up to six months to complete. But bridges can be placed in two appointments in one week. Of course, it is only the dentist who can decide on the best tooth replacement option to choose. Cost should never be the only factor, and your dentist should always be able to justify his or her suggestion of the most appropriate way to replace the tooth or teeth.