There are several ways to replace missing teeth: a bridge, an implant, or a partial. An implant is a titanium root that is restored with a crown or “cap.” It generally takes a few visits over several months to replace a tooth with an imlant. The implant is placed on the first visit. After a few months of healing, an impression is made for a crown. In about three weeks, the crown is cemented in place. You must still brush and floss around the implant crown.
What is a bridge?
A bridge is placed on the teeth on either side of the missing tooth. It usually takes two visits to place a bridge. On the first visit, the teeth on either side missing tooth are trimmed down and an impression is made. In two to three weeks the bridge is fitted and permanently cemented in place. You still must brush and floss around the bridge. Having professionally applied fluoride treatments after your dental cleaning, as well as using a fluoride rinse at home, is also helpful to protecting your bridge from decay.
What is a partial?
A partial can also replace missing teeth. A partial has clasps that hold it in place. It takes several visits to replace missing teeth with a partial. Impressions are made on the first visit. A couple of weeks later, the partial is tried and a couple of weeks later the permanent partial is inserted. It should be removed at night and cleaned.