Comparing Dental Implants, Dental Bridges, and Dentures

Difference between implants, bridges, and denturesIf you have lost one or more teeth, it’s important to replace them. If you don’t replace missing teeth, you not only suffer the cosmetic effects of having teeth missing from your smile, you also are at risk for additional tooth loss. Missing teeth mean the remaining teeth have to take a larger portion of the load from your bite. They also have to do it without the full amount of bracing on the side, which can cause them to drift.

There are three tooth replacement options that are commonly in use today: dental implants, dental bridges, and dentures. The best way to find out which is right for you is to talk to a dentist. Please call 918-528-3330 or email Winters Dental Excellence in Tulsa.

There are three tooth replacement options that are commonly in use today: dental implants, dental bridges, and dentures. The best way to find out which is right for you is to talk to a dentist. Please call 918-528-3330 or email Winters Dental Excellence in Tulsa.

We also offer the following reference chart so you can begin to understand the benefits and limitations of each option:

Dental Implants

Performance

Look and function like natural teeth.

Hygiene

Like natural teeth: Brush, floss, and see the dentist.

Comfort

Feel like natural teeth.

Appearance

Indistinguishable from natural teeth.

Durability

Very sturdy: can withstand all normal bite forces.

Flexibility

Can replace one tooth to an entire smile.

Impact on Natural Teeth

No impact on natural teeth.

Bone Loss

Prevents bone loss.

Longevity

Can last a lifetime with proper care. Crown may need replacing after 10 or 20 years.

Cost

More expensive.

Time

One month to one year, depending on the condition of your mouth.

Dental Bridges

Performance

Look and function like natural teeth.

Hygiene

Cleaning under the bridge requires extra care.

Comfort

Some sensitivity in supporting teeth possible.

Appearance

Mostly natural: close inspection reveals bridge.

Durability

Can be very sturdy. Some bridge configurations vulnerable to bite force.

Flexibility

Limited applications: normally just one tooth.

Impact on Natural Teeth

Requires modification of natural teeth. Results in additional stress on neighbors.

Bone Loss

Doesn’t prevent bone loss.

Longevity

Can last 10 or 20 years.

Cost

More expensive.

Time

Less than one month.

Dentures

Performance

Function similar to natural teeth. Reduced bite force and slippage possible.

Hygiene

Must be removed to be cleaned and should not be worn while sleeping.

Comfort

Poorly fitting dentures can irritate gum tissue.

Appearance

Range of appearances: from very natural to very fake.

Durability

May warp under hot water or break when dropped. Accelerated wear.

Flexibility

Can replace one tooth to an entire smile.

Impact on Natural Teeth

Partial dentures can cause wear and increase cavity risk for neighbors.

Bone Loss

Poorly fitting dentures can accelerate bone loss.

Longevity

May need adjustment in less than a year. Maximum lifespan 8 years.

Cost

Less expensive.

Time

Less than one month.

Dental Implants

Dental Bridges

Dentures

Performance Look and function like natural teeth. Look and function like natural teeth. Function similar to natural teeth. Reduced bite force and slippage possible.
Hygiene Like natural teeth: Brush, floss, and see the dentist. Cleaning under the bridge requires extra care. Must be removed to be cleaned and should not be worn while sleeping.
Comfort Feel like natural teeth. Some sensitivity in supporting teeth possible. Poorly fitting dentures can irritate gum tissue.
Appearance Indistinguishable from natural teeth. Mostly natural: close inspection reveals bridge. Range of appearances: from very natural to very fake.
Durability Very sturdy: can withstand all normal bite forces. Can be very sturdy. Some bridge configurations vulnerable to bite force. May warp under hot water or break when dropped. Accelerated wear.
Flexibility Can replace one tooth to an entire smile. Limited applications: normally just one tooth. Can replace one tooth to an entire smile.
Impact on Natural Teeth No impact on natural teeth. Requires modification of natural teeth. Results in additional stress on neighbors. Partial dentures can cause wear and increase cavity risk for neighbors.
Bone Loss Prevents bone loss. Doesn’t prevent bone loss. Poorly fitting dentures can accelerate bone loss.
Longevity Can last a lifetime with proper care. Crown may need replacing after 10 or 20 years. Can last 10 or 20 years. May need adjustment in less than a year. Maximum lifespan 8 years.
Cost More expensive. More expensive. Less expensive.
Time One month to one year, depending on the condition of your mouth. Less than one month. Less than one month.

If you have made up your mind or still have additional questions about tooth replacement options in Tulsa, please contact Winters Dental Excellence for an appointment today. We can answer any questions or get started making your smile whole again.