Missing Teeth Replacement: Legacy Dental

Missing Teeth Replacement: What are Your Dental Options?

Did you know that 120 million adults in the United States are missing at least one tooth and 36 million have no natural teeth at all? At Legacy Dental in Salt Lake City, we know that tooth loss is common in the United States. However, you don't have to suffer in silence. We offer a variety of options for missing teeth replacement, including:

Dental Implants

Dental implants are ideal for many patients. For this teeth replacement option, an implant is inserted into your jawbone, which replaces the natural tooth root. It can be used to support a crown, dental bridge, or denture. If you're missing one or more teeth due to dental health issues, periodontal disease, or injury, this may be your best option.

Benefits

  • 95% success rate
  • Permanent/durable
  • Comfortable/natural
  • Aesthetically appealing

Considerations

  • Surgical procedure
  • Dental implant is only a supporting structure to be used with a crown, bridge, or denture
  • Expensive

Implant-Supported Crowns/Bridges

At one time, the only options for missing teeth replacement for back teeth were dental bridges or dentures. Now, there are a few alternatives to these restorations:

  • Implant Crowns
  • Implant-supported bridge

An implant crown is best for replacing one or two missing teeth. An implant-supported bridge replaces multiple teeth. The number of implants required, and the length of the bridge depends on how many teeth are missing. If you're missing all of your teeth, implant-supported dentures may be your best option.

Benefits

  • Healthy teeth will not be modified
  • Function like natural teeth
  • Aesthetically pleasing
  • Look/feel natural
  • Easy to maintain

Considerations

The major disadvantage of this missing tooth replacement procedure is the time commitment and the dental visits required. This will depend on your oral health and the treatment you choose. Total treatment time can be 3 to 6 months or more.

Implant-Supported Dentures

An implant-supported denture is an overdenture that is attached to implants- which offer better support. There are several different names for implant-supported dentures:
  • Implant dentures
  • Full denture implants
  • Denture implants
  • Snap-in/Snap-on dentures
  • Implant-supported dentures

Just like other implant-supported missing tooth replacement options, implant dentures require at least two dental implants. You can get either fixed or removable implant-supported dentures.

Benefits

Since they are attached to titanium posts that have been implanted into your jawbone, implant-supported dentures have more strength and stability.

Considerations

  • Require jawbone density
  • Cost more than traditional dentures

Partial Dentures

Partial dentures, often referred to as "partials", can be used to quickly replace missing teeth, while keeping your remaining ones. The dentist will make a mold of your mouth and the partial denture will be made from that. In some cases, clasps are required to keep the partial in place.

Benefits

  • Not as expensive as implants/bridges
  • Quick, non-invasive procedure
  • May improve speaking and eating ability
  • Removable

Considerations

  • May not look as natural or function as well as fixed options
  • May require several adjustments to fit properly
  • May be obtrusive
  • Will need to be relined/replaced often
  • Easy to misplace/lose
  • Must be removed to be cleaned daily
Schedule your consultation today with Legacy Dental to find out more about our missing tooth replacement options. We can examine you and evaluate your needs and goals to determine the best course of treatment.

What are different missing teeth conditions?

Everyone loses their primary set of teeth- commonly referred to as "baby teeth"- as they age. However, the secondary set of teeth- known as "adult teeth"- are permanent, but there are certain conditions, health issues, and other things that can increase the risk of tooth loss.

Genetics

Sometimes, the secondary set of teeth never forms because the upper and lower mandibles are malformed. This is known as tooth agenesis and can occur with certain congenital conditions. There are three types of congenitally missing teeth:

Gum Disease

Gum disease causes spaces between teeth and gums, referred to as pockets. Over time, this can cause teeth/bones to decay and gums to recede, resulting in tooth loss.

Gingivitis is a mild form of gum disease that causes inflammation, redness, and bleeding in the gums. With proper treatment, it can be reversed- but if left untreated, it progresses into periodontitis, which requires extensive treatment.

Injuries

Trauma, such as falls, traffic accidents, sports injuries, etc, can cause tooth loss. If you experience an injury that results in tooth loss, you must seek immediate attention from a dental specialist.

Other Risk Factors

There are several other dental health conditions and habits that elevate the risk of tooth loss, such as:

  • Tooth decay
  • Smoking
  • Poor dental hygiene habits
  • Lack of dental care
  • Poor nutrition

Does missing tooth replacement require surgery?

We offer a variety of missing tooth replacement options at Legacy Dental. Some of them require surgery, such as the implant-supported options. In some cases, you may need to have some teeth extracted due to decay or other problems. This may be as simple as requiring a local anesthetic to pull the tooth or may require sedation to remove the tooth or teeth.

If you opt for an implant-supported missing tooth replacement treatment, the dentist will cut into your gum and drill into the bone. Then, a titanium rod will be inserted into the jawbone. Then, you will be given some time to recover and for the jawbone to fuse around the implant before the crown, bridge, or denture is attached.

Typically, a local anesthetic is used. However, if you have anxiety and panic attacks when you think about visiting a dentist, you may want to ask about sedation dentistry. When you come in for your consultation, please ask about your options. We will be happy to explain them to you.

How much time and money will dental replacement cost me?

If you are in or near Salt Lake City, call us today at (385) 446-2942 or visit us online to book your appointment. We offer a free virtual dental consultation, or you can visit the office with our $69 new patient offer, which includes a full exam and x-rays. We will be more than happy to help you decide the best course of treatment for your dental needs.

We do understand that dental care is expensive and, if you're like most people, you don't really budget for it. Many times, people who don't have insurance avoid visiting the dentist for this very reason. However, at Legacy Dental, we do offer a variety of options to help you afford your dental treatment:

Payment options include:

  • 5% discount for cash patients who pay in-full prior to starting treatment. We do this because it saves us from having to deal with insurance. Since it saves us time, we pass the savings on to our patients. This is not offered to patients who are using dental insurance because we're already accepting a lower payment.
  • CareCredit is a third-party healthcare financing company that can be used by patients who have good credit. Typically, patients are offered 6-month or 12-month, interest-free terms. In-House Financing: we do allow patients to make payments. If you can pay 1/3 of the total cost up-front and leave your credit/debit card on file for us to automatically take payments, we don't have to involve a 3rd
  • Pay as you go: payment can be made for treatment rendered on the day of service, or the total cost of treatment can be divided evenly over the expected number of appointments. This option can be used with dental insurance.

After-care for missing teeth replacement

After your missing tooth replacement procedure, the dentist will provide you with specific, detailed aftercare instructions. These will ensure proper healing- and for implant-based treatments, reduces the already low risk that the implant will fail. Some of the typical aftercare instructions for implant-based replacements include:
  • Avoid disturbing the wound the day of surgery. You will probably have a metal healing abutment protruding through your gum.
  • Some bleeding/redness is normal and excessive bleeding can typically be controlled by biting on a gauze pad placed on the wound for 30 minutes. If this does not stop the bleeding, contact the office for help.
  • Swelling is normal and can be controlled with an ice pack during the first 36 hours following surgery.
  • Drink plenty of fluids. On the day of surgery, avoid hot foods/liquids. You can consume soft foods on the day of surgery, but return to a normal diet as soon as possible, just avoid chewing on the surgical site.
  • As soon as the anesthetic begins wearing off, you should start taking pain medication as directed. To prevent infection, make sure that you are taking your antibiotics as directed.
  • Practice good oral hygiene to support the healing process. Brushing should not be a problem, just make sure to be gentle on the surgical areas and use a soft-bristled brush.
  • Immediately following surgery, keep your physical activities to a minimum.
  • Unless otherwise directed, you'll need to wait at least 10 days to start using your prosthesis.

Schedule Your Consultation

If you are missing one or more teeth, consider scheduling your consultation with the team at Legacy Dental today. We know that missing teeth can be a problem- both aesthetically and functionally. We have several missing tooth replacement options, and we would love to help you determine which one is best for your needs.

  • ‘‘Legacy Dental has taken excellent care of my family for many years. Their attention to detail, inviting atmosphere, and genuine care for and relationship with each of their patients is exceptional. I highly recommend Dr. Campbell and his team!’’

    Dave R. (Legacy Dental Patient)
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How to reach us in and around Salt Lake City, Utah

Legacy Dental is located close to the Utah landmark - Natural History Museum.

You can check if we’re near to you and drive to our clinic from the Natural History Museum, Wheeler Historic Farm, Murray Park, Liberty Park.

Monday: 8.00am – 8:00pm
Tuesday: 8.00am – 8:00pm
Wednesday: 8.00am – 8:00pm
Thursday: 8.00am – 8:00pm
Friday: 8.00am – 5:00pm
Saturday: 8.00am – 2:00pm
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