Implants vs. Bridges: Which is Better?
Has your dentist recommended looking into a dental bridge or implant to replace one or more of your missing teeth? If so, take the time to understand the differences between these options. Dental implants permanently replace the natural root of the tooth (with a titanium post that connects to your bone) so that the new crown has a strong foundation. A new crown is made from a mold of your bite, and that crown is permanently attached to the post. Dental bridges consist of crowns on either side of the missing teeth (which can be natural teeth or dental implants) and a false tooth or teeth that “bridges” the gap. This filler tooth is attached to the crowns.
Simple enough, but there are a few distinctions to consider as you make your decision on whether to choose a dental implant or a dental bridge:
Bone volume – If the jaw has been significantly damaged or you’ve had a great deal of bone loss, your dentist might assume that a dental bridge is your only option. While this has historically been true, the All-on-4 dental implant procedure that we perform here at Bergen Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery strategically places the implants, meaning that almost anyone is a candidate—even those with bone loss.
Price – While dental implants are initially more expensive than bridges, in the long term, they are a far better investment. You can expect to replace bridges every 5-10 years, whereas dental implants should last you a lifetime with proper care.
Durability – Bridges require maintenance and do need to be replaced from time to time. Implants are surgically attached, and therefore create a long-term, durable solution that will not need replacement, provided you have good oral hygiene.
Protection of nearby teeth – Because the surrounding teeth are the foundation for a dental bridge, they can wear down over time, especially as the bridge is replaced. Dental implants prevent nearby teeth from loosening or your jaw bone from being re-absorbed due to missing teeth.
Maintenance – Without a doubt, implants are much easier to maintain because they can be cleaned just like your other teeth. Bridges, on the other hand, are harder to keep clean. You’ll need to clean underneath the bridge and in between the teeth that support the bridge and keep the gum tissue clean as well.
Bergen Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery has performed thousands of dental implant surgeries with remarkable long term success. We believe this solution has many advantages as compared to dental bridges, but we’re happy to answer any questions you or your dentist have about the process.
Call us to schedule a consultation: Hackensack 201.343.8297, Westwood 201.664.5656, or Ridgewood 201.444.4137.