Weighing the Benefits of Dentures vs. Bridges

Smiling bald man wearing pink shirtIf you are weighing the benefits of dentures vs. bridges, and you need to know the facts, San Antonio family dentist Dr. Chris Reger can help. To fully understand your options for restoring missing teeth, you need to schedule an appointment with an experienced dentist. Dr. Reger will assess your oral health, then take the time to sit down and present treatment options. He will explain the differences between bridges, partials, and dentures, as well as traditional and implant-supported restorations. Contact us to reserve a consultation time with Dr. Reger today, and you will be well on your way to a complete smile.

The Importance of Restorative Treatment

Missing teeth are a serious concern, both for your oral health and self-confidence. Studies show, if you do not replace even one missing tooth, you increase your odds for losing more teeth over the next few years. An absence of teeth can also contribute to osteoporosis of the jaw, which causes unattractive facial collapse, or wrinkling on the cheeks and around the lips.

Dental Bridges

A dental bridge is a prosthetic that replaces one tooth or a few consecutive teeth. In addition to improving your appearance, fixed bridges will strengthen your bite and distribute chewing forces more evenly across your mouth. Fixed bridges are held in place by crowns anchored to two adjacent, healthy teeth. Bridges can also be attached to dental implants, small titanium posts placed directly into the jaw bone.

Because implants can last a lifetime and offer unequaled support, an implant-retained bridge is often preferred to a traditional bridge. If a crown on a traditional bridge fails, the entire bridge fails. And with implants, there are no crowns placed so your natural, healthy teeth do not need to be altered. If you choose to receive an implant-supported bridge, Dr. Reger can perform your implant surgery in the comfort of our dental office.

Full and Partial Dentures

Dentures are like bridges in that they replace missing teeth, but the two have significant differences. There are two types of dentures: partial and full. Partial dentures replace a few teeth, and the teeth can be missing across the upper or lower arch. Much like a jigsaw puzzle, replacement teeth in a partial fit between existing, natural teeth. Traditionally, partial dentures are removable appliances attached to healthy teeth with clasps. Modern dentistry has made partial clasps less conspicuous recently, so partials can look natural. Partials may also be attached to implants, so natural teeth do not have to take on the weight of the replacement teeth.

Full dentures replace the entire row of teeth on the upper or lower arch. The restoration consists of natural-looking teeth on a gum-colored base. The underside of the denture is molded to fit against the natural ridges of the jaw. Adhesive is used to keep lower dentures in place, and upper dentures can be secured by natural suction or adhesive. Like bridges and partials, full dentures may be attached to dental implants. Many of our patients prefer the unparalleled stability and durability that an implant-supported denture can offer. Keep in mind, Dr. Reger works to keep fees affordable for implants. In many situations, the cost of implant-supported dental restorations is not much different from the cost of a traditional bridge or denture.

Learn More About Your Options

Contact us today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Reger, and learn more about restoring health and beauty to your smile.

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