What Are the Options to Replace Missing Teeth?

April 20, 2021 | Dental Surgery,Implant Dentistry

Missing teeth not only have a negative effect on a smile, but may also impact health and wellbeing by interfering with chewing and speaking. Whether lost teeth are the result of injury, decay, gum disease or a genetic condition, tooth replacement helps prevent shifting, misalignment and the eventual deterioration of the jawbone.

If you are weighing the options for replacing missing teeth, it may be time to schedule a consultation with the friendly staff at Dental on Central.

Dental Implants

Dental implants offer a comfortable permanent solution to one or more missing teeth. This common option for tooth replacement is reliable, durable, and looks and feels like real teeth. Unlike dentures, dental implants become a permanent part of the mouth and don’t require removal.

An implant is a long-term replacement that does not damage surrounding teeth. It keeps the jawbone intact and healthy by replacing the root of the tooth with a metal screw. The screw becomes an anchor for the new tooth placed on top. The screw fuses with the jawbone, so no slipping or shifting occurs – the way it can with a bridge or dentures.

The procedure for dental implants can involve several oral surgeries, beginning with one to insert the screw. Time allows the bone to heal around the implant, and then a second procedure places the crown or artificial tooth on top of the permanent screw.

Traditional Tooth-Supported Fixed Bridge

A tooth-supported bridge can be a single false tooth or a row of false teeth to fill in the gap left by missing teeth. The dentist cements crowns into place on the abutting teeth to support the bridge and keep it from shifting. Since this noninvasive procedure requires no surgery, it only takes a few dental visits to complete.

Implant-Supported Bridge

When multiple teeth are missing in a row, an implant-supported bridge may be the ideal solution. It is similar to a traditional dental bridge; however, instead of support by crowns placed on adjacent teeth, implanted titanium posts keep the bridge in place.

Unlike a traditional bridge, an implant-supported bridge does not damage healthy surrounding teeth. Because the implants fuse into the jawline and seal with natural bone, they prevent jawbone atrophy and stay firmly in place without shifting. While the bridge itself may eventually require replacement, the implanted posts are a permanent solution.

Removable Partial Dentures

For those missing only a few teeth, removable partial dentures may be the right option. This design fits each patient’s individual needs and typically consists of replacement teeth attached to a gum-colored base with metal clasps or more natural-looking connectors. In some cases, the abutting teeth require crowns to stabilize the fit.

Removable partial dentures are taken out for sleeping and daily cleanings, but they are a simple, reliable option that requires no invasive procedures for placement.


A flipper tooth is a temporary partial denture on a removable retainer fitted against the roof of the mouth, typically with one or two teeth attached. They are made based on a model of the individual’s mouth and provide a simple, natural-looking option to replace missing teeth. They slip easily into place and help stabilize the remaining teeth. It is a lightweight, noninvasive option to quickly fill a gap in a smile.

Removable Complete Dentures

When a person is missing most of his or her teeth, removable complete dentures are a good option for complete, reliable replacement. The prosthesis has natural-looking teeth on a gum-colored resin base.

Dentures feature a personalized fit designed for each patient’s mouth. Dentures can restore beautiful smiles for people who are missing teeth, as well as improve the patient’s ability to talk and chew. Removable complete dentures require removal for cleaning and sleeping.

For more information about your options to replace missing teeth, speak to a friendly representative from Dental on Central.