Dental Implants vs. Fixed Bridges

The disadvantages of tooth loss extend beyond the obvious oral health problems.  It also results in loss of confidence, and possible problems with eating and speech.  You don’t have to live with that embarrassment.  High quality dental implants at our Cerritos, CA practice may be the optimal choice for replacing missing teeth. 

What are dental implants?

The only permanent solution to replacing missing teeth, dental implants are made of a biocompatible titanium post that is inserted directly into the jawbone. The titanium works with the bone, and over time, forms a bond with it, much like the original bond between the tooth and jaw bone.

Are there other options for replacing missing teeth?

Dentures (removal “false teeth”) were, for years, the most common method of replacing teeth.  However, they have a number of disadvantages, including:

  • Maintenance
  • Poor fit
  • Slippage and embarrassment
  • Need for replacement, due to deterioration or even something like a weight loss or gain, which would require a new set for better fit.

Dental bridges are another option to replace missing teeth.  For a long time, fixed bridges were the most popular option for tooth replacement.  A fixed dental bridge is a non-removable prosthesis that attaches to remaining natural teeth.  Many patients prefer a bridge to dentures, because it is non-removable, more comfortable, with a more natural, esthetically pleasing look.

What are the advantages of dental implants over fixed bridges?

Fixed bridges can present problems.  The natural teeth on either side of the bridge must be shaped to accommodate the appliance. This process can damage healthy teeth, to restore those that are missing.  It also makes the adjacent teeth more prone to bacterial plaque accumulation, decay, and periodontal disease.  A bridge can also increase the possible need for future root canals.

Your dentist will place dental implants in the jawbone where the missing tooth root was, without impacting healthy teeth.  With the best care, dental bridges may only last up to 10 years, while dental implants may last a lifetime when properly placed and cared for.  Dental implants also preserve bone, and significantly reduce the deterioration that results in loss of jawbone height.

Dental implants are the most permanent solution for tooth loss.  They look and function just like natural teeth, and restore the confidence that comes with a healthy, natural smile.

About Shawn Hofkes, DDS

With advanced training in oral and maxillofacial surgery, Shawn Hofkes, DDS is qualified to provide comfortable, safe dental surgery from our state-of-the-art dentist office in Cerritos, CA. To schedule your appointment or consultation with Dr. Hofkes, contact us today. We proudly serve patients of all ages from Cerritos, Lakewood, Long Beach, Buena Park, and all surrounding communities.