If you're like most people with one or more consecutive missing teeth, you're probably wondering if you're a good candidate for restorative dentistry. You undoubtedly already know that missing teeth can have a significant impact on your overall appearance that can negatively impact both your professional and social lives. Fortunately, dental technology has advanced to the point where no one has to live with missing teeth. Several types of dental bridges are available, but implant-supported bridges provide the most realistic appearance and function most like your natural teeth. However, not everyone is an ideal candidate for implant-supported bridges. Here's what you need to know.
You'll Need to Be in Good Oral Health
The best candidates for implant-supported bridges are those who are in good overall oral health. If you've got significant tooth decay, gum disease, or other dental problems, talk with your dentist about devising an oral care plan designed to minimize these issues so that you can safely move forward with implant-supported bridges.
You'll Need Adequate Jawbone Tissue
Implants are titanium screws that are installed in the bone tissue of your jaw. Because they provide the same functionality as tooth roots, they need a firm anchor, and that can't happen without adequate jawbone tissue. In some cases, you may be able to have a bone graft if you don't have enough tissue. If not, other types of bridges are available that don't require implants. Traditional implants, for instance, are supported by the teeth on either side of the gap. Your dentist will be able to advise you on which type of implant is best for your particular situation.
You'll Need to Be Committed to Good Oral Hygiene
Even though implants involve prosthetic teeth, you'll still need to practice good oral hygiene. They need to be brushed and flossed just like natural teeth, but your dentist will probably recommend a low-abrasive toothpaste so their surface won't be scratched. Failure to practice good oral hygiene may result in gum disease.
No matter what type of dental bridge you end up getting, it will help you chew your food better, help you speak better, and help keep your remaining teeth from shifting in your mouth. Many people also find that implants help retain the shape of their face. Please contact your local dentist's office at your convenience for more information on available options for those with one or more missing teeth. Click here for more information.