Treating Multiple Tooth Loss In Burton
Mike Allen Dental discusses the options available when a number of teeth are lost.
Most patients who lose teeth or need to have them extracted at our Burton practice, typcially only have to have one or two removed. There can be occasions though where multiple teeth need to be extracted, but this is usually only the case where long term neglect or significant damage has occurred. Tooth loss to this degree can also occur as a side effect of medical treatment.
All of these situations present the patient with the dilemma of what to do about it, so let’s take a look at some of the options available.
Leaving the odd tooth
In most situations, the team at Mike Allen’s Dental Practice will do all that they can to save a tooth. The situation does arise in multiple tooth loss though, where there may just be one or two teeth remaining on an arch. It is possible to work around the existing teeth, but often it is more effective, and cheaper, to remove the remaining teeth and replace the complete full arch of teeth.
Dentures have been widely used for this purpose for many years and have improved in quality, providing a reasonable aesthetic look and restoring some of the function that has been lost. Whether a partial or full denture though, they rarely feel like natural teeth and some patients have issues with stability, particular as time goes on and the shape of the mouth changes slightly. Dentures are also quite fiddly to keep clean and need to be removed from the mouth to do so.
On the positive side, having dentures fitted typically does not require invasive treatment and may be an option for those who are more nervous about visiting the dentist.
A dental bridge offers more security than dentures and can be useful for replacing a number of adjoining missing teeth. They can’t be used in the traditional way where a full arch of teeth have been lost though as they usually require crowns to be fitted to existing adjacent teeth to provide their stability. Even where this is a possible solution, those healthy adjacent teeth have to be shaped so that the supporting crowns fit. Some patients are understandably reluctant to have this done to healthy teeth.
These are an increasingly popular solution for our Burton patients and can also be especially effective where multiple tooth loss has occurred. Although most patients probably know them best when used to replace individual missing teeth, they can also be used to replace a large number of consecutive teeth or even a full missing arch. There is no need to use an individual implant for each missing tooth in situations like this. They can be used to support either a fixed bridge or even adapted dentures. Generally, a bridge will be used, but where a patient has worn dentures for some time, it may be a better option to stabilise their dentures rather than make changes.
The number of implants used will depend upon the patient’s individual situation and the number of teeth that they will be replacing. Even where a full arch of teeth are being replaced, it may be that as few as four dental implants are needed, hence why the procedure is sometimes referred to as ‘all on 4’. In some cases six or more implants may be used but it will certainly be less than if each tooth were to be replaced individually. This would require an extensive period of treatment and also be very expensive. ‘All on 4’ or ‘teeth in a day’ as the procedure is also sometimes known as, is a more practical and affordable way of replacing a larger number of missing teeth.
This latter procedure also differs from an individual implant placement as there is no requirement to wait for three months before the treatment is completed. Once the implants have been placed and the bridge or denture secured, you can leave the practice with a new full set of teeth. Although, in theory, you can then return to your normal habits, we do recommend a softer food diet for a while, largely for your own comfort, to allow healing and so you can gradually adjust to the feel of your new teeth.
Where multiple tooth loss occurs, or if you have dentures and are interested in finding out more about more stable solutions, why not arrange to have a consultation at Mike Allen’s Dental Practice by calling us on 01283 845345. Our team looks forward to your call.Google+