For some patients, getting dental implants to replace their teeth just isn’t an option. This could be because of health issues, like a systemic disease that makes dental implantation impossible, or it could be a personal aversion to oral surgery or having foreign materials in their body. These patients can be sure that dental implants are not the only way to replace a missing tooth, and other options for tooth replacement exist, albeit with a twist. Read on to find out what can be done instead of getting dental implants.
One option for non-implant tooth replacement to think about is a removable bridge or denture. Removable bridges are essentially partial dentures, and they have certain benefits to them. One is that they are more hygienic, as you can take them out and clean them, clean the area behind and underneath them easily, and will rarely cause denture sores. They are also pretty comfortable, but they come with downsides as well. They can easily fall out if not secured or bonded in some way, and can be lost or damaged when outside of the mouth. But removable bridges or dentures do provide an aesthetically pleasing, and very cost effective alternative to dental implants.
Non-implant tooth replacement options that are fixed in the mouth have the very obvious benefit of not being removable, and not falling out at any time. They also require more cleaning and a more vigorous approach to your at home oral health routine. There are several options for fixed dentures or bridges: you can get them adhered to your tooth surfaces, or you can get the teeth adjacent to them prepared to fit the bridge or denture. This means that the denture or bridge will be held in place mechanically. Which is the better option depends on the position of the tooth you are replacing, and the condition of the adjacent teeth, so it varies form case to case.
Complete tooth replacement
It is worth noting that all of these options are inferior to dental implants, because they only replace certain parts of the tooth, and cannot stop your other teeth from getting loose and eventually falling out. The reason is that the alveolus (the ridge of soft bone material that the teeth are housed in) disintegrates if there are no tooth roots in it. Dental implants are the only tooth replacement option that also replaces the tooth roots and not just the visible portion of the teeth.