Applications To Replace Missing Teeth

Many people who have lost one or more teeth still appear to have perfect smiles. Restorative dental care can transform the look and functionality of the mouth after the loss of teeth.

Here are a few applications that your dentist may use to replace missing teeth.

Dental Implant-based Restorations

Implants are designed for placement in the bone of the jaw. There, they fuse or integrate with the bone tissue for stability. However, the function of a dental implant is foundational; it helps stabilize other devices that are connected to replace the natural crowns of missing teeth.

The device that is paired with an implant is often selected based on the number of teeth that will be replaced. Here are a few crown-replacing devices that may be used:

  • Implant-supported dentures. Traditional dentures can be fitted with mechanisms that attach the dentures to a connector on a dental implant. The mechanisms are placed on the underside of the dentures. Full implant-supported dentures are used to replace all of the teeth of the top or bottom palate. Partial implant-supported dentures are used when multiple teeth are missing from a palate, but some natural teeth are still present.
  • Single dental crown. A dental crown can be added to an implant to replace one tooth. An abutment is still used to connect the crown and the implant.
  • Two fused crowns. Dental crowns that are used to replace the crowns of adjacent teeth that are missing may be fused together. The fused crowns may attach to a single dental implant for stability.
  • Dental bridges. A dental bridge includes crowns that are cemented to the teeth or to dental implants to hold the bridge in position in the mouth. 
  • All-on-fours. Full dentures that are not removable can also be supported by dental implants. All-on-fours are full palates of replacement teeth that are connected to four implants by screws.

Traditional Fixed Bridges

A dentist may also use a fixed bridge to replace missing teeth. The bridge may be used alone if abutments or bordering teeth are still present around the gap from the missing tooth or teeth. The attachment between the bridge's crowns and the abutment teeth fix the bridge in position. If no abutment teeth are present, implants can be used. 

Still, implant support may be preferred because the abutment teeth have to be altered for the placement of a bridge. Some tooth material is removed before the crowns are cemented to the teeth.

If you have one or more missing teeth, schedule a consultation with a dentist in your local area. They can tell you more about dental implants and crowns.