There are many ways that teeth can be replaced these days, it can be a bewildering prospect deciding on which treatment to choose.
So we’ve put together the following patient guide to help you choose which way will work for you. Whether you have one tooth , a few teeth or even a whole jaw-full missing there are 3 main ways to approach teeth replacement, although some of these can be combined using new methods.
Dentures are removable teeth (also known as ‘false teeth’). Not everyone realises that they can be used to replace single teeth as well as many teeth.
Dentures are for you if:
- You need teeth replaced quickly (48 hours for emergencies)
- You have old dentures which are loose, but you got on well with them when they fitted
- You don’t mind having bulky teeth in the mouth
- You are happy taking them out for cleaning after meals
- You are happy to leave your teeth out over night
- You are looking for the most economical tooth replacement treatment
Dentures can be made of Acrylic or Metal or we also make ‘Flexi-dentures’ now.
Each material has its own advantages and disadvantage which you read about here.
Cost from £300
Dental bridges have been around for 100 years. Until dental implants came along dental bridges were considered the gold standard treatment for the replacement of single teeth or a number of teeth.
Bridges may be the treatment for you if:
- You have sound teeth to attach to – usually either side of a gap.
- You have crowns either side of a gap anyway
- You are replacing an old bridge that has given good service over a long period
- Your bone is not suitable for dental implants
- Can achieve excellent aesthetic results
- Long lived (10 years possible)
- Feel like real teeth
- Quick procedure– bridges can be completed in 2 weeks
- Fixed in place so don’t move around (but not removable like dentures)
- Less expensive than implants
- Requires solid teeth to fix the bridge to
- Bridge support teeth have to be drilled down to make room for the bridge
- Bridge support teeth will often fail in the long term because of the extra strain on them imparted by the bridge (5 yrs +)
- Not suitable for replacing more than 2 teeth in a row
- Not possible if large number of teeth are missing
- Not possible if teeth missing do not have a solid tooth behind them to act as a back bridge support
- Much more expensive than dentures
Cost from £1900
We also do Temporary Bridges
This is a sub-species of bridges called ‘Maryland’ or ‘Rochette’ bridge. These bridges are suitable for only a single tooth and glue onto the next door tooth.
They make excellent fixed ‘temporary’ teeth but will only last a few months – especially if they are used as temporary back teeth.
These bridges do not require drilling of the next door tooth as they simply glue on, however they are prone to dislodging and we only use them as temporaries.
Cost from £350
Titanium implants are now routinely used to replace missing teeth.
A minor surgical procedure is undertaken to gently screw a titanium implant into the bone where a tooth is missing. We do this using local anesthetic and it is gentler than a tooth extraction! We can provide sedation for this treatment if you wish. We offer oral sedation free of charge.
The titanium post needs to be left for a short time for the bone and gum to heal around it before it can be used to support a new tooth on top of it.
Once that happens, the titanium becomes one with the bone around it and is not visible when the patient smiles.
Dental implants can be used to replace one, a few or all the teeth in the mouth. If lots of teeth need to be replaced with implants then we do not put an implant in for every tooth that is missing. Instead we fabricate bridges that fix onto the implants so that each implant is supporting more than one tooth.
Dental implants can also be used to secure dentures in place. These are called ‘implant retained dentures’ – super dentures that can be used to present the World News without fear of them falling out, and equally at home chewing through a juicy steak!
- Versatile – can be used to replace 1 tooth, 2 teeth or a whole mouth
- Aesthetics are excellent, they look like real teeth
- No drilling of next-door teeth required
- Stand-alone – Implants do not rely on the patient’s own teeth to secure to so they actually relieve the load on remaining teeth. This avoids potential issues with bridges and dentures as the healthy teeth are left alone
- Feel just like your own teeth
- Very secure – patients eat a normal diet, implants don’t fall out or move when eating/speaking
- Long lived – implants last over 10 years, the longest surviving implants have been in place for 25 years now
- More expensive than bridges and much more expensive than acrylic dentures
- Need more upkeep than simple dentures such as regular visits to the hygienist
- More difficult to clean round
- Treatment time is longer (usually 12 weeks)
Cost from £2100
The Free Consultation
Without seeing things for ourselves, we can’t tell people what their options are.
And so with that in mind, we are happy to offer free consultations, as this is a big decision for most people. We are careful to take budget, comfort and appearance into account when explaining all the available choices and there is never any pressure to proceed, and certainly not on the day.
We set out to be a friendly practice and try to provide everybody with what’s right for them, at an affordable cost. We hope our dentist reviews give that impression.