Tooth loss may occur for a variety of reasons, but no matter how it happens, it needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Adult teeth which have been extracted or lost due to trauma or disease can leave the smile looking unsightly. Additionally, if left untreated, patients may begin to experience the shifting of the existing natural teeth, resulting in even more gaps and spaces within the dental arch. Instead, patients should see Dr. Steven L. Hatcher, DDS in the Davidson, NC area to ask about tooth replacement options.
Tooth replacement can be done with a general and cosmetic dentist who has the experience in repairing imperfect smiles. Dr. Steven L. Hatcher, DDS offers three methods of tooth replacement in his state-of-the-art practice, including dentures, bridges, and dental implants.
Dentures may be either full or partial depending on how many teeth are missing. An entire dental arch of missing teeth may be addressed with full dentures, while just a few may benefit from a partial which snaps into place using metal brackets. Full and partial dentures are removable and economical, and may be chosen by patients who are still considering more permanent, long-term options such as bridges or dental implants.
Bridges are porcelain restorations fabricated from crowns and false teeth (pontics) which are fused together to create a single dental apparatus. This is bonded over the adjacent teeth to hold it in place and allow patients to repair a smile that has been affected by the loss of one or more teeth within the dental arch. Bridges are more permanent than dentures but not nearly as stabile and long-lasting as dental implants.
These are the gold standard in tooth replacement and are often suggested for patients who are missing one tooth and have sufficient bone structure underneath the gum tissue for successful placement. Dr. Steven L. Hatcher, DDS believes these are the best options for patients who want a lifetime of replacement and who are interested in the best value for their money. Dental implants are a wonderful investment in one's smile for life as they often last decades with minimal care and attention.