Tooth Replacement Options: Dental Bridges vs. Dentures

Once your tooth extraction is complete and your extraction site has completely healed, let’s quickly discuss a couple of tooth replacement options. Each of the following options have pros and cons. Not to mention, this decision is one that should be made in consultation with your dentist. Tooth replacement for each patient is different and needs to be a customized approach, based on the patient’s health and lifestyle. Today, we’re going to focus on two types of replacements, dental bridges and partial dentures.

Dental Bridges vs. Partial Dentures

Both bridges and partial dentures essentially fulfill the same purpose as any other tooth-replacement option: to fill gaps left by missing teeth. However, there are some distinct differences between the two and your choice will largely depend on how many teeth are missing and the overall structure of your teeth

Tooth Replacement Options: Dental Bridge

As their name implies, dental bridges “bridge” the gaps made by missing teeth. They are fixed, permanent artificial replacement teeth anchored in place using healthy teeth on either side of the gap. Because of this, dental bridges are typically only recommended as a replacement for one or more adjacent teeth.

Here is an Overview of Dental Bridges at a replacement option.

Related Article: Tooth Replacement: Dental Implants vs. Bridges: Which is Better?

Tooth Replacement Options: Partial Denture

Consisting of replacement teeth embedded in a molded plate, partial dentures clip onto the surrounding teeth via small metal anchors and are typically used to replace multiple missing teeth. Partial dentures are removable, and the plate can be made from a variety of materials including plastic or acrylic.

Learn More about partial and complete dentures HERE.

How to Take Care of Your Dental Appliance

Dentures and partials can be great tooth replacement options to replace your missing teeth; however, there are a few differences that should be noted when caring for them.

Clean Daily:

You need to clean your appliance daily. It is important to take it out at night and clean it. This not only keeps your appliance looking clean and new, but it will also allow your gums to have a break. Wearing your appliance 24/7 can cause fungal infections or sores on your gums.

After taking your appliance out, you should brush your gums gently with a soft bristle toothbrush. This will help brush away and plaque and bacteria that have accumulated over the day.

How to clean your appliance
  1. Brush with a denture brush and warm water (don’t skip this step, soaking alone will not get all the debri off your denture).
  2. Soak your denture overnight in a denture-cleansing solution with the ADA seal of approval.

Storing Your Dental Appliance

Watch out for pets, especially dogs. Your dog loves you, but may also love to chew up your appliance. The same goes for small children; kiddos love to put things in their mouth and a dental appliance is not an exception. These appliances could cause choking or injury if swallowed. When storing your appliance, you should always keep it in a case placed in a spot that your pet or small child cannot reach.

Be Careful: It Can Break

The first important thing to remember is your appliance is made of acrylic. If dropped it can be broken easily. Sometimes your dentist can repair them but depending on the break you may need a replacement.

Regular Dental Visits

Finally, see your dentist a minimum once a year.  Your dentist can help keep your denture looking clean while also checking your gums to ensure no ulcers or sore spots have formed.  If you notice a sore spot in between appointments, call your dentist.  They can adjust your denture to help it fit more comfortably.

Related Article: Schedule Your Dental Appointment with Us

Tooth Replacement Options at Luff Dental

If you need to have a tooth (or multiple teeth) pulled OR if you have a missing tooth, you would probably like to have it replaced to fill the gap between your teeth. There are several tooth replacement options that you can consider. If you are unsure of which option is best for you, give us a call for a consultation to help improve and restore your smile! Learn more about Preventative, Restorative and Cosmetic Dentistry available at Luff Dental.

Work with Dr. Luff and her team to find the most effective solution for your smile! We are always accepting new patients in the Lee’s Summit, MO and surrounding area who are ready to improve their confidence and smile! Please call Luff Dental at (816) 875-3391 to schedule your appointment or click HERE and we’ll connect with you!