To replace a missing tooth, you have a couple of options. For one, you could receive a bridge, which uses wires and anchor points to suspend a crown from the other teeth in your mouth. While a bridge will fill the gap between your remaining teeth, it will not be as durable as your natural teeth. The second option is to receive a dental implant, which has many benefits.
Your teeth constantly hold each other in check. However, when you lose a tooth, there is nothing to hold the other teeth in check. A bridge may help with this, but an implant, which consists of a titanium post inserted into your jawbone and a porcelain crown, will hold its place just like one of your natural teeth would. Thus, you don't have to worry as much about your teeth moving and messing up the look of your smile or the shape of your bite.
Bone Loss Prevention
Another benefit of a dental implant is that it will help to retain the integrity of your jawbone. Whenever you bite down on a tooth, the pressure of the bite travels down your tooth and root and stimulates the jawbone. The jawbone responds by boosting bone growth to make sure the tooth is firmly anchored. When you lose a tooth, your jawbone loses this stimulation, and bone loss can set in. Because a dental implant is firmly anchored to your jawbone, pressure on your fake tooth will stimulate your jawbone just as a natural tooth would.
If you receive a bridge, you have to be careful of what you eat because hard or sticky foods can put enough pressure on the crown to bend the wires that hold it in place. If you have a bridge at the front of your mouth, you will want to avoid eating corn off the cob or even biting into an apple. In contrast, an implant will behave just like one of your natural teeth would, so you can eat nuts, hard candies, toffee, or bite into an apple if you so choose.
When you have to get a fake tooth, you should look for a tooth that will look and behave as much like one of your natural teeth as possible. A bridge will fill the gap, but it will not behave like a natural tooth. For the best results, you want a dental implant. Click here for info on this topic.