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How many dental implants do I need?

A patient discussing Dental Implants options with their oral surgeon

If you have missing teeth, it’s only natural to wonder how many implants you may need to get your smile back. While the final answer will depend on your individual case and treatment plan, here are some basic guidelines.

Single tooth replacement

When only one tooth is missing, a single implant is used to attach your new tooth in place. Dental implants are titanium rods that screw into your jawbone to replace the root of your tooth. Once this post is installed, healed, and fused to the bone, your new crown can be permanently affixed with an abutment, which is the connecting piece between your prosthesis and implant.

Missing two teeth

  • Adjacent teeth: If both missing teeth are side-by-side, you may be able to replace both teeth with two single-tooth implants.
  • Non-adjacent teeth: When missing teeth are located in different places in your mouth, an individual implant will be required to replace each tooth.

Dental implant options for three teeth

Patients missing three teeth in a row have the option to either go with an implant-supported bridge or three individual implants. An implant-supported bridge uses an implant at each end to support the prosthesis. A bridge typically carries a lower cost as fewer implants are needed and only one prosthesis to build, but individual implants can be easier to floss and create a more natural-looking junction at the gum line.

Replacing four teeth or more

Patients missing a number of teeth will be presented with multiple treatment options depending on the location and other factors such as jawbone health. Your doctor may recommend a combination of single-tooth implants, implant-supported bridges, or even a full-arch replacement.

Speak with an oral surgeon

The best way to find out how many dental implants you need to replace your missing teeth is to meet with an oral surgeon. Your doctor will examine your mouth and bone structure to make an expert recommendation on your best treatment path moving forward.

Ready to Replace Your Missing Teeth?