A guide to the many modern options for patients to replace their missing, failing teeth
At the office of D. Bartholomew G. Kreiner DDS, every effort is made to protect and preserve our valued patients’ teeth. However, when teeth cannot be saved with procedures like root canal therapy, it is essential to promptly replace those teeth with everything from bridges to dentures.
The trouble with long-term tooth loss
The longer the bone in your jaw goes without getting some sort of stimulation from teeth through functions like chewing, the worse bone loss becomes. Problems with chewing and speech further deteriorate. Plus, your confidence can take a real hit. You may retreat from social activities out of embarrassment about how your smile looks. As the effects of bone loss take hold, your face may look prematurely aged. The lower part of the face collapses, and wrinkles and sagging become prominent. Fortunately, there are more options than ever before to replace teeth in a way that looks and feels natural and supports optimal, low-maintenance, and lasting function.
A world of options
For starters, not all patients require the replacement of several or all of their teeth. We can preserve some damaged teeth with restorative dentistry treatments. For patients who still have some healthy teeth remaining in their mouths, we can recommend a dental bridge (to replace one or a few teeth) or partial dentures. Dental bridges are held in place by neighboring “anchor” teeth. Partials are prosthetic teeth and gums held in place by specialized attachments, such as clasps. Still, other crowns, bridges, or partials may be stabilized in the mouth with dental implants. The implants are positioned in the jawbone. Once they grow into the surrounding bone and attach to the prosthetic teeth, the implants can then function like tooth roots. These artificial roots provide the utmost stability, which further supports patients’ satisfaction with their new teeth!
You will need a full denture if you need to replace all of your teeth in either your upper or lower jaw. These dentures mimic the structure and function of the teeth and gum tissue. A precise fit is essential; the denture must conform to the mouth’s contours to avoid slipping around. Products such as denture adhesive can help to hold the prosthesis in place. Implants, too, may be positioned in the jawbone to keep the upper/lower dentures in place. Implant-supported dentures provide the ultimate protection against bone loss by keeping the jaws strong.
Due to our advanced capabilities, Dr. Kreiner can even place your new teeth during the same appointment as your extractions. To learn more about your options, including immediate dentures, our Bel Air, MD team welcomes your call to (410) 983-6775.