Dr. Zingalis offers many wonderful ways to replace missing or damaged teeth. The three most popular are dental bridges, removable dentures, and dental implants. If you are looking for the best option for your own needs, we encourage you to do some research and schedule a consultation with Dr. Zingalis. To assist in your initial research, here is a comparison of the three most popular options.
Patients that choose dental bridges often do so because they are easy and fit well into a fixed budget. This option is highly recommended to replace missing teeth by permanently attaching the bridge piece to adjacent healthy teeth. Additionally, prior to this treatment, patients must be examined to make sure they are free of tooth decay and the teeth are structurally stable to ensure proper attachment for a dental bridge.
Most patients like this option because it is cheaper than dental implants, no surgery is required, and treatment is quicker than other tooth replacement options. These patients are also happy that this choice provides less risk and can be replaced quickly if there are problems.
One of the biggest downsides to this process is that once natural teeth have been ground down for anchors to the bridge piece, they will never be normal again. Moreover, interfering with the tooth structure increases the risk of future decay and the possibility of root canal treatment. The bridge piece can also be difficult to keep clean when food particles and plaque get stuck under the parts of the bridge.
Many patients choose removable dentures after losing multiple teeth. Dentures consist of an arch of removable replacement teeth that are anchored in a gum-colored base of moldable plastic. Removable dentures are typically used to replace multiple teeth, but they can also be used to replace a single tooth.
For patients on a limited income, dentures were an easy option that fit a fixed budget. In fact, most patients can get a custom set made in just a few weeks. This allows for speedy restoration of basic bite function without resorting to surgery or altering surrounding teeth.
In many instances, patients admit that their dentures are sometimes a bit uncomfortable and they look much less natural than the other options. Secondly, dentures do not halt deterioration that can occur in the jawbone when teeth are missing for long periods. Ultimately, this can result in a sunken facial appearance and loss of jaw muscle tone. Additionally, patients sometimes have difficulty speaking clearly and enjoying some of their favorite foods.
Many patients who choose dental implants do so because they are a permanent and natural-looking option. Over the course of the last several decades, dental implants have climbed to become one of the most popular tooth replacement options. Part of the reason for this is their success rate hovers around 95%.
Dental implants are the only tooth replacement treatment that can reduce or eliminate jawbone deterioration. This means that jaw muscles stay strong, supple, and extremely functional. Dental implants also need no extra maintenance and can be cared for just as they would for natural teeth. Dental implants are also the longest lasting tooth replacement option and can last decades longer than other options if cared for properly.
One of the biggest drawbacks of dental implants is that they are rarely covered by dental insurance. The process is also much longer than other options that are ready in just weeks. Dental implants require multiple visits over the course of 3-6 months. Although they were not necessary for all patients, supplementary procedures like bone grafts and tissue augmentation may be required for some patients.
Dr. Michael Zingalis is proud to serve our community by transforming less-than-perfect grins into healthy and attractive smiles. We offer many exceptional tooth replacement treatments and lots of great payment options. If you live in San Antonio or surrounding areas, call us now to schedule a consultation and get your own smile transformation journey started today.