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July 2018 Newsletter

The Many Options for Lost or Broken Teeth

woman smiling outside

According to the American College of Prosthodontics, approximately 120 million people live with at least one missing tooth. That’s just under 1 in 3 people in the United States plagued with eating issues and lower self-esteem due to their smile. When looking at the Springfield area, that’s at least 43,000 people living with a missing tooth.

While you may be hearing a lot about the benefits of dental implants in Springfield, we aren’t the type of dental office to only talk about only one solution for tooth replacement. We know patients would much rather have a wide range of options for replacing teeth, which is why we offer removable, fixed, and implant-supported solutions before jumping into traditional implants alone.  Everyone is not the same.  So, the treatment that best suits each individual will not be the same for everyone.

At the end of the day, the treatment you choose should best fit your needs, not someone else’s. It means finding the option that’s going to make a positive impact on your smile, confidence, and overall health. Let’s consider your options today!

The Removable Solution to Tooth Loss

woman in dental chair looking in a mirror

When you need to replace a single tooth or multiple teeth at once, partial dentures are a great solution. By fitting in with your existing teeth, you can restore your smile with a customized prosthetic to eat, speak, and smile without worry. In addition, cleaning partial dentures is a simple process of soaking them over night and brushing them in the morning.

With partial dentures, you can expect a low upfront cost and a level of customization that matches your existing gum tissue, facial structure, and natural teeth comfortably and reliably. While partial dentures are more advanced than ever before, it’s important to note that they aren’t always the best long-term solution. This is due to the mouth constantly changing shape, a common occurrence for people with missing teeth.

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The Pros and Cons of Fixed Solutions

modal of a dental crown

If you don’t want to maintain a removable prosthetic, consider fixed solutions like a traditional crown and bridge. Crowns can be attached to prosthetic teeth, effectively creating a bridge to fill the open space in your smile.

Compared to dentures, crowns and bridges are typically a better long-term solution that offers fantastic natural blending with your smile. This makes the crown and bridge a step up in aesthetics compared to partial dentures. However, along with having a higher cost, this method requires the use of other teeth to fit properly. It also doesn’t solve the source of the problem that comes with missing teeth, which is a missing root. We’ll explore why that’s important in the final section.

A Different Kind of Implant Treatment

close up of a beautiful smile

An implant-retained denture is truly a step up compared to the removable version mentioned earlier. Patients who are missing many teeth shouldn’t have to bear the high cost of replacing their entire mouth with implants. With implant-retained dentures, Dr. VanderMolen  strategically places only a few implants in the jawbone to anchor a larger prosthetic.

With this option, you get a restoration that closely matches your natural teeth. It’s also the best permanent solution you can get while still using a denture. It has a stronger hold, the best longevity, and restores your biting force up to 70%, which is a far cry from the 10-12% increase that traditional dentures provide. This is all possible thanks to the implants effectively replacing the root structure under the gums, helping you stimulate bone and maintain blood flow to the mouth and face. The only significant downside of this option is a higher upfront cost to make it happen.

The next time you go to a sporting event or see a movie, look to the person to your left and to your right. Chances are, at least one of you has a missing tooth that could benefit from any three of these options. Until you stop by to see one of our fantastic doctors at Advanced Dental Care, you won’t know which option is best for you.

If you had an appointment recently and one of our dentists or hygienists mentioned that you need to replace a missing tooth, we hope you will ask him or her about these solutions the next time you visit!

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