If you are missing a tooth, you have different options to choose from to get it replaced. Below are two of these options so you can decide which one is best for you. Talk these over with your dentist so you can each come together on this decision.
A dental implant is one of your options. The average cost of an implant is approximately $4,250. This amount does depend on the dentist and the type of implant you receive. An oral surgeon will do this implant for you. There are two types of dental implants you can choose from: endosteal and subperiosteal. The endosteal implants are shaped like a cylinder or a screw and made of a ceramic or metal material. The implant is placed inside your jawbone. The subperiosteal implant is a metal framework that the oral surgeon will attach to the top of your jawbone and underneath your gum tissue.
When the doctor is finished with the surgery, you will wait for a certain amount of time for your gums to heal. Once they are healed, the surgeon can finish the procedure, and you will have a new tooth. The tooth will look completely natural, as it will be the same color as your other teeth. As long as you take proper care of your teeth, the dental implant should never have to be replaced.
A bridge has to be replaced approximately every 15 years, which makes this option more expensive than a dental implant. You could end up paying over $10,000 for the bridge including the replacement costs over your lifetime.
Because there is a gap due to the missing tooth, the other teeth will shift or rotate into the gap. This will result in you having crooked teeth and a bad bite. A bridge is used to fill the space where your tooth is missing.
The bridge includes two caps and a false tooth. The dentist will place the caps over the teeth, also known as anchoring teeth, that are directly next to the open space. A false tooth is in-between the caps. The false tooth is also known as pontics and is made from porcelain, alloys, or gold.
Before the dentist places the caps over your teeth, they will grind down the enamel on each tooth so the cap will not add bulk to your mouth.
Once you come to a decision, your dentist can give you much more detail about the option you choose.