Dental Implant vs Bridge – Is a bridge or implant better? 

by Gary Adams DDS Implant Dentist

bridge vs dental implant

Is it Necessary to Replace a missing tooth?

What happens if a tooth is not replaced.bridge vs implant
  1. Teeth can shift and the bite can go bad. Bite collapse.
  2. Tooth wear and breakage because of imbalanced and uneven biting forces around the area of the missing tooth or teeth.
  3. Bone loss and gum disease especially near where teeth have been lost.
  4. Food trapping in areas where teeth are missing. Gum disease may develop as teeth shift and more spaces open up for food and bacteria to get stuck.

Advantages of Implants. Are they Better than Bridges?

  1. Implants do not attach or leverage or connect to other teeth
  2. reduce bone loss
  3. can be easily cleaned with floss like natural teeth
  4. feel similar to natural teeth; and not thick and bulky. 
  5. prevents gum disease. No foul smells from food and bacteria trapping
  6. prevents teeth shifting and a bad bite
  7. restores proper chewing function and bite balance
  8. dental implants do not get gum disease at the same rate as natural teeth
  9. dental implants do not decay or ever need root canals
  10. dental implants rarely crack or break
  11. do not require drilling usually
  12. Implants cost the same or less than bridges

Advantages of Dental Bridges vs Implants?

  1. two or more teeth to be prepared or drilled to support a bridged span of teeth. 
  2. loss of bone may occur because a tooth has been removed and a root has lost and not put back into the gum to stimulate the bone
  3. bridged teeth are connected and more difficult to clean because teeth are connected. Flossing cannot be done.
  4. greater chance for cavities and periodontal disease
  5. prevents teeth from moving
  6.  Teeth involved in a bridge can fracture due to more force placed on fewer teeth. Teeth are being leveraged to replace missing teeth.
  7. Teeth in bridges are at increased risk for needing root canal therapy
  8. Teeth need to be drilled / prepared that may not not need crowns
  9. bridges usually do not last as long as dental implants
  10. If one of the teeth involved in the bridge is lost, now two need to be replaced, bone grafting will likely need to be done and the crown on the lone surviving bridge tooth will need a new crown.most patients will eventually lose one or more of the teeth involved in the bridge necessitating another bridge and more costly dental treatment. Due to bone loss and the damage caused by bridges, future dental treatment and costs are greater. In fact future costs when a bridge fails can be more than double the costs of the original bridge. For example: 

If a Bridge Fails? Bridges usually last 5-10 years and normally result in losing more teeth.

  1. now there will be the need for more teeth to be replaced and a bigger less favorable bridge or 2-3 implants instead of one had an implant been done from the beginning.
  2. Bone grafting will likely be necessary because a tooth has been lost for a long time
  3. crowns will be needed for any teeth surviving a bridge failure
  4. or maybe 3 implants if all teeth in the bridge are lost

Dental Implants in the long run cost less than bridges because a bridge will eventually fall apart, resulting in the need for more dental implants. Bridges usually costs about as much as 3 crowns. At Maryland Holistic Dentist one  implant costs less than 3 crowns. Unless there is a reason why someone cannot receive a dental implant, there is no good reason to get a bridge.

Dental Implants now come in metal-free ceramic or zirconia tooth colored forms.

Implant vs Bridge video:

The dental implant is the best way to replace teeth. This video shows what happens to a bridge as it eventually fails.  Bridges normally lead to bone and gum loss, cosmetics results, tooth decay / caries and more tooth loss.  Research shows that 60% of all dental bridges fail during the first 10 years.  Dr. Adams does implant teeth from start to finish. Teeth can normally be replaced from start to finish in 2-3 months in 2-3 short appointments.

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