Tooth Replacement Options For Me

Tooth Replacement Options - ThoroughDent Smiles

Estimates have it that every average adult in the U.S. aged between 35 and 49 years is missing at least seven natural teeth. While four of those teeth may be wisdom teeth, adults typically lack at least three teeth! It is important for you to consider the different tooth replacement options as soon as you lose a tooth. Any delay to replace the missing tooth can cause additional problems, such as resorption (loss of bone mass in the jaw at the location of the missing tooth). In this article, you’ll discover some of the tooth replacement options experts at ThoroughDent Smiles in Georgetown, KY will discuss with you.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are designed to replace the root of the natural tooth which you have lost. The implant is surgically inserted into the jaw and an artificial tooth (crown) is placed on that implant by a connector called an abutment. While the process to get an implant can last several months, it is the best alternative because the replacement tooth is as strong as a natural tooth and it can last for your entire lifetime. We asked our friend, Dr. Ben Kacos, a dentist in Shreveport, LA, about dental implants. Dr. Kacos says dental implants are one of the popular restorative treatment options to choose from. Dr. Kacos asserts that the average success rate for this tooth replacement option is in excess of 95 percent.

However, one major issue with this option is that it can be very expensive, so it could be out of reach for some patients. Also, the method will require the implant to be surgically inserted in your jaw.

Implant-Supported Bridge

If you are missing several teeth and cannot afford to replace each of them with an implant, then an implant-supported bridge may be the option for you. Dr. Jordan Smith will assess you and determine how many implants will be required to support the bridge if you have several missing teeth. Once the procedure is completed, you will have tooth replacements that are nearly as strong as your natural teeth. The downside to this option is that all the missing teeth have to be in one location and you will have to undergo an invasive procedure in order to have the implants installed.

Tooth-Supported Bridges

Another restorative treatment option is the tooth-supported bridges, a dental bridge that can be supported by your remaining natural teeth. In this option, the experts at ThoroughDent Smiles file down the adjacent tooth on each side of the gap left by the missing teeth and then place crowns on those adjacent teeth so that the bridge is supported by the nearby teeth. The bridge may be made from porcelain, gold, metal alloys, or a combination of different metals. The bridge is cemented onto the nearby teeth so that it isn’t removable. One big advantage of this alternative is that the treatment process is shorter and less expensive. However, the restoration isn’t as durable as dental implants and the preparation (filing down) done to the nearby teeth is irreversible.

Removable Partial Dentures

Removable partial dentures are another option Dr. Jordan Smith, a dentist in Georgetown, KY may consider or present to you. This option is ideal if you are missing one or more teeth in the same arch (regardless of whether those missing teeth are adjacent to one another or not). The denture has an acrylic base which may or may not have a cobalt base for added strength.

Dr. Kristina Neda reveals that removable partial dentures are called removable because they are held in place on the nearby teeth by clasps which are made from either metal or nylon. Removable partial dentures are more affordable when compared to implants and implant-supported bridges. The procedure is also quick and is non-invasive. However, removable partial dentures are delicate and easily break. They also have to be replaced or relined regularly.


Some of the tooth replacement options, such as dental implants, require several months to elapse between the placement of the implant and when you get the final restoration. If the missing tooth is in a conspicuous area (one of the front teeth, for example), you may be uncomfortable living with the gap until the dentist places the permanent restorations. In that case, the professionals at ThoroughDent Smiles will give you a flipper (a temporary replacement) which you can use until the permanent one is placed.

Flippers are inexpensive and you can leave with them at the end of your first appointment to replace your missing tooth or teeth. However, they aren’t durable since they are temporary restorations. Some can feel bulky in the mouth, especially at the end of your day when you are tired.

As you may have noticed, each tooth replacement option has its own set of benefits and drawbacks. Contact Dr. Jordan Smith at ThoroughDent Smiles in Georgetown, KY for advice regarding the most cost-effective way to replace your missing tooth or teeth. The ThoroughDent Smiles team will narrow down the replacement options to those for which you are eligible and can afford and they will help you to select the best for your smile.