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What Are My Options For Replacing Missing Teeth?

If you’ve experienced a missing tooth through decay or through an accident then it’s good to know that you have options open to you. Of course you could always leave the gap and do nothing. However this could cause issues with adjacent teeth later on as they will be prone to shifting. So assuming that you would like to replace your missing teeth then you have 3 options. These are dentures, bridges and dental implants. In Richmond here at Sheen Dental we are more than happy to discuss all options to decide the best course of action for you. As such we thought that it would be a good idea to give you the pros and cons of each option here, so that you can make an informed decision.

Dentures

Many people often feel that the thought of having removable dentures will make them feel older than they actually are. The truth is that modern dentures are well made and are a far cry from dentures of old. Not only this, they are also a cheaper, low-cost option. For these reasons dentures are still one of the most popular choices. However the down side of dentures is that because they sit on the gum line they don’t stop jaw bone degeneration which occurs when a tooth is missing. For this reason they have to be adjusted on a regular basis and eventually replaced as the shape of your jaw changes. If they aren’t adjusted properly they can rub on the gum causing discomfort as well as becoming loose. Loose dentures can also bring about problems with everyday tasks such as chewing and speaking and can lead to embarrassing situations.


Dental bridges

These are a tried and tested, reliable technique to replacing a missing tooth and have a good history of longevity and have a great natural look about them. As the name suggests a single tooth plugs the gap and is is supported by suspending it between two crowns that are on either side of each other, hence the bridge. The down side is that in order for the bridge to function correctly, your adjacent healthy teeth need to be ground down to take the supporting crowns. In addition the tooth that plugs the missing gap relies heavily on the support of the adjacent teeth which might in the long term cause a faster deterioration of these teeth.


Dental implants

Dental implants are completely self supporting and therefore don’t rely on the support of any other teeth. Implants have been pioneered over the last 50 years or so and are simply a titanium replacement for your natural tooth root. Whether you decide to undergo dental implants in Richmond or anywhere else in the country a well-fitting, well-maintained implant has been known to last 30-40 years and is the closest thing to natural looking teeth that modern dentistry allows. As implants are secured into the jaw bone they rely on a process of bone fusion (otherwise known as osseointegration) to give the implant that super strong foundation upon which to attach a porcelain crown. This ultimately means that dental implants not only halt the bone degeneration process, but can also encourage re-growth. This is the only type of tooth replacement to do this. The disadvantages of having dental implants are that they do require surgery. In addition standard implants require a period of healing between the various stages, so the entire process from start to finish can take 3-9 months to complete. Finally, because it does involve skilled surgery it is the most expensive option in the short term. However long term, implants can work out to be good value for money.


If you need any further information about dentures, bridges or dental implants in Richmond, then talk to Sheen Dental. Contact us on 020 8876 5277 or visit our website at www.sheendental.co.uk to book your free, no-obligation consultation today.

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152, Upper Richmond Road West
East Sheen
London SW14 8DP

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