Single Tooth Dental Implant – Chevy Chase, MD
An Outstanding Solution For A Single Missing Tooth
Missing just one tooth is very common and, contrary to popular belief, has a lot of negative consequences to your oral health. In addition to having a visible gap when you smile or laugh, it also causes the other teeth to shift, changing your bite alignment. This can lead to trouble chewing and even cause cavities and gum problems in the surrounding teeth. Not to mention that your jawbone “shrinks” after tooth loss, leading to changes in your facial structure over time. Replacing a missing tooth with single tooth implants in Chevy Chase is a great way to avoid all these issues so you can enjoy a healthy smile for many years. If you’re missing just one tooth, contact us today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Freyne!
Single Tooth Replacement Options
You have two main options for replacing a single missing tooth, with an important distinction between them. A bridge only replaces the crown portion of a tooth (the visible portion above the gumline), while an implant replaces both the root and crown.
- Fixed bridge – A bridge uses the two teeth on either side of the missing space as anchors. A dental crown is placed on both of these teeth, which are attached to a single crown in the middle. Bridges last an average of 10-15 years and can be somewhat difficult to clean, increasing the risk of cavities or gum problems around the two anchor teeth. And since they don’t replace the root of the missing tooth, the bone mass in the jaw will deteriorate over time.
- Single dental implant - A single implant is a titanium post that’s surgically placed in the jaw to take the place of a missing root. The implant then supports a dental crown that replaces the crown of the missing tooth, mimicking the way a natural tooth functions. The in-office surgery takes 1-2 hours and then the implant usually takes 3-6 months to fuse, or integrate, with the surrounding jawbone. The last step is having a crown attached, resulting in whole tooth replacement that looks and feels great.
The Benefits of Single Implant Restoration
Dental implants in Chevy Chase offer multiple benefits, including:
- Longevity – Whereas a fixed bridge only lasts 10-15 years, an implant can last several decades or a lifetime.
- Better function - Implants provide more chewing strength so you can comfortably eat hard or crunchy foods.
- Maintains your jawbone – An implant “tricks” your body into thinking a natural tooth is still present, so your facial structure is maintained over time.
- Doesn’t affect healthy teeth – A single implant doesn’t affect the adjacent teeth on either side of a missing space like a bridge does.
- Self-confidence – Implants feel so much like your own teeth that you may even forget you have one. You’ll simply have a smile that looks and feels incredibly natural, which is a great self-confidence booster.