Dental Implants vs. Dental Bridges to Replace Teeth

Dental Implants vs. Dental Bridges to Replace Teeth

Dental technology has come a long way. We’re now at a point at which patients with missing teeth have several replacement methods available. We help them restore the appearance and functionality of their mouths.

Dental bridges are a time-tested approach to filling the gaps in your smile. However, the availability and popularity of dental implants has rapidly increased in recent years. But what are the major differences between a dental bridge and a dental implant? Which procedure is the right one for your mouth and smile?

Most dentists including the skilled professionals at the Bella Smiles office in Roslyn, prefer dental implants. The durability, longevity and simplicity of their care make dental implants the best option. However, you need to consider a number of factors when making this decision. Factors including the condition of your surrounding teeth, and if your tooth loss is recent or happened years ago.

Practical Reasons for Both

Dentures have been the method of choice to replace entire arches of teeth for hundreds of years. Bridges were once the only choice available to replace a single tooth or a few teeth. However, a dental bridge affects more than just the empty space in your mouth.

The dentist must permanently alter the adjacent teeth on either side of the gap. He removes most of the outer layer of enamel to anchor the bridge. This adjustment allows dental crowns to permanently attach to these anchor teeth.

However, with dental implants, your Bella Smiles dentist will embed the replacement tooth directly into the jawbone. The dental implant restoration will be strong and a permanent bond.

However, a dental bridge may be the best choice for you if the teeth surrounding the gap have large fillings and will need crowns in the future. If you lost the tooth or teeth years ago, the gum and bone tissues will have receded. You may need additional surgeries beyond the implant, such as bone grafts, before placement can occur. Discuss all the advantages and disadvantages to both procedures with your Bella Smiles dentist.

Your Oral Care Routine

Oral hygiene is much easier with a dental implant than with a bridge. This is because dentists cement dental bridges in the mouth. Bridges have at least three crowns connected together to fill the space of the missing tooth. The nature of this design can make properly brushing and flossing more challenging, so be meticulous when cleaning them.

Flossing, in particular, will require extra effort. You will need to thread the floss around the crowns to prevent gum disease from setting in. But dental implants replace teeth individually without affecting other teeth. This allows you to brush and floss around an implant as you would your natural tooth, making effective oral care much easier.


Dental implants are extremely strong, providing a restoration that can last a lifetime. The implant screw that is the root of the prosthetic is a metal cylinder that consists of titanium. Titanium is resistant to decay and your jawbone tissue naturally fuses with it.

On the other hand, the average life of a dental bridge is approximately 10 years. So you will need to eventually replace the entire bridge. Since a portion of your natural tooth remains beneath it, the remaining tooth structure will be at risk of further decay and gum disease.

Cost Comparison

The cost of the dental bridge is cheaper initially, but it will eventually need replacement. Implants – from preparation to final placement – may seem more expensive. However, because it is a one-time expense, having them can actually save you money over time. Fortunately, some dental insurance providers can offer to pay for a portion of the implant process.

Dental Implants in Long Island, NY

Both methods are better than feeling self-conscious about smiling or having difficulty chewing. Although bridges are an older procedure, dental implants have become more commonly available over the years. In most cases, they are the best method of treatment for replacing missing teeth because of their durability and ease of care.

If you are in the Long Island area and considering dental implant surgery, don’t hesitate to contact us. Our Riverhead, Roslyn, and Nesconset dental offices are ready for your call today.