We offer several options to replace missing teeth.
There are several different types of bridges that are used to replace single or multiple missing teeth, unlike a denture which is removable, they are fixed to teeth adjacent to the gap and look and feel just like natural teeth. They can stop your remaining teeth from moving, prevent food trapping and improve the ability to eat and speak.
A denture is a removable device that can replace a single tooth, multiple teeth or even a full arch of teeth. Dentures can be made of several materials – standard acrylic, chrome or a flexible acrylic.
Dental implants are the modern way to replace missing teeth. They are durable, long lasting and made to appear as if they emerge naturally from the gum. Implants have the longest life and best success rate of any dental treatment.
A dental implant consists of two parts, the ‘screw or post’ acting as the root of the tooth, and the crown. The implant ‘post’ is made of titanium which integrates with the surrounding bone. The crown is then attached to the post.
Nowadays an implant-retained crown is virtually indistinguishable from a natural tooth. For more information please see our implant page.
Tooth Replacement FAQ’s
Why should I replace missing teeth?
To improve appearance is one reason. Another is that the gap left by a missing tooth can mean more strain is put on the teeth on either side. A gap can also mean your ‘bite’ is affected, because the teeth next to the space can lean into the gap and change the way the upper and lower teeth bite together. This can then lead to food getting packed into the gap, which causes tooth decay and gum disease.
How are missing teeth replaced?
This depends on the number of teeth missing and where they are in your mouth. The condition of the teeth you still have also affects the decision.
There are three main ways to replace missing teeth. The first is with a removable false tooth (or teeth) – called a partial denture. The second is with a fixed bridge. A bridge is usually used when there are fewer teeth to replace, or when the missing teeth are only on the side of the mouth. The third way is by the use of dental ‘implants’. This is where an artificial root is placed into the bone of the jaw and a crown or bridge placed on top of this.
What is the difference between a plastic partial denture and one that contains metal?
Plastic partial dentures are less expensive to make, but unless they are designed very carefully they can damage the teeth they fit against.
Metal partial dentures are usually made from an alloy of cobalt and chromium, and they are much stronger. They are lighter to wear and can be supported by the remaining teeth. Although the base is metal, they have gum coloured plastic and natural looking teeth fixed to them. They are more expensive than plastic ones.
How do I choose the best type for me?
Be guided by your dentist as they will know the condition of your remaining teeth and what will achieve the best results for you.
Can I have a bridge fitted straight after having a tooth removed?
It can take up to 6 months for your gums to heal properly after an extraction. This means that you may need to have a temporary bridge or denture before the permanent bridge is fitted.
Should I take my denture out at night?
We recommend that you do take dentures out at night to give your mouth a chance to rest. When doing this it is important to leave it in water to prevent any warping or cracking.
Can I always have a bridge to replace missing teeth?
You can have a bridge only if you have enough strong teeth with good bone support.