Dental Implant Alternatives
Tooth loss can be devastating to your oral health and overall quality of life. Dental implants are often recommended as the gold standard of teeth replacement because they are reliable and long-lasting. In some cases, however, individuals may not qualify for implants due to health concerns, or they simply may not wish to undergo oral surgery.
At our Edmonton, AB, dental practice, Dr. Nathaniel Podilsky offers a number of dental implant alternatives to restore patients’ smiles and boost their confidence. Here, we explore these options as well as the pros and cons of each.
Reasons Why Patients May Not Qualify for Dental Implants
There are several reasons why patients may not be eligible for dental implant treatment. Here are a few of the most common:
- There is too much bone loss in the jaw
- The patient desires a faster teeth replacement solution
- Diseases or conditions that affect healing
- The patient may not want to undergo surgery
Removable Partial Denture
A partial denture is generally recommended for patients who are missing several teeth. In theory, however, a partial can also be used to replace a single missing tooth. This appliance rests on the gums and uses the adjacent teeth for support.
Temporary partials, also called flippers, are often used in the interim period while a patient is waiting on their final restoration. While they are helpful in these scenarios, most individuals do not like them long-term. They can be cumbersome, and they must be removed and soaked at night to keep them clean.
Our Edmonton team sometimes recommends dental bridges when patients are missing one to three teeth in a row. This restoration has crowns that are supported by the neighboring teeth while artificial teeth fill in the gap. Bridges were the go-to option for teeth replacement before dental implants were invented.
Dental bridges are non-removable and can provide an aesthetic, natural-looking option. However, they will need to be replaced at some point, as the average lifespan of a dental bridge is between five and 15 years. Furthermore, bridges also alter natural tooth structure because enamel removal is necessary for a proper fit. This can increase the risk of decay and other damage in the future.
The Option to Do Nothing
There is, of course, always the option to do nothing after losing a tooth. However, even one small space in your smile can be detrimental to your oral health. When a tooth is lost, the jawbone in that area loses density, which can make dental implant placement more difficult in the future. Also, when teeth are out of alignment, it can increase the risk for decay, mobility, and even further tooth loss. If you lose a tooth, we recommend replacing it as soon as possible.
Schedule a Consultation
During a consultation at our Edmonton practice, Dr. Podilsky can discuss your teeth replacement options with you. He can design a personalized plan to meet your needs and budget. To schedule an appointment, contact us online or call our office at (780) 428-6846. Our team is always available to discuss potential treatments or answer any questions you may have.