What are dental bridges?
Dental bridges are fixed dental appliances that literally "bridge" the gap left by missing teeth. They are used to replace one or more missing teeth. Because they are permanently attached to the teeth on either side of the gap, unlike dentures, they can only be safely removed by a dentist. They are also known as "permanent partial dentures."
How to care for your dental bridges
Once your dental bridge has been installed, you can treat it in the same way that you would treat your natural teeth. Your bridge should last for many years if you maintain it properly with regular brushing and flossing. You should also continue to see your dentist regularly.
What are dental implants?
An artificial tooth root made of a small titanium rod called a dental implant is surgically inserted into the jawbone. Replace missing teeth with dental implants. An artificial tooth can be built on a foundation made of titanium, a type of metal that can form bonds with bone. The artificial tooth replacement is then attached with a dental crown (cap) on top of the implant.
When used together, the dental crown and implant have a very similar appearance and feel to a natural tooth.
How to care for your dental implants
Like with bridges, you should take care of your dental implants just like your natural teeth. This includes a strong brushing and flossing routine, and regular visits to the dentist.
How do I know which option is right for me?
Dental implants and dental bridges both have their advantages, and the best option for any given person will depend on that person's oral health needs as well as his or her financial situation.
The placement of dental implants is significantly more invasive than the placement of dental bridges. However, dental implants can often appear and feel more natural than dental bridges.
In addition, for the dental implant procedure to be successful, you must have a sufficient volume of the jaw bone. You might still be able to get an implant if you don't have enough jawbone, but you would need to have bone grafting surgery first to make sure the implant could be supported. As a result, the implant procedure would be a little more invasive and take longer.
At the end of the day, the only way to determine which tooth replacement option is best for you is to consult with your dentist.