Dental Bridge VS. Partial Denture: What’s the Difference?
October 11, 2017
Replacing missing teeth can involve a variety of scenarios. The restoration you choose, however, is primarily based on your clinical needs – such as how many teeth you need to replace and where they are located within your mouth. While a full denture is required to restore a full arch of missing teeth, what about when a patient has just a few missing teeth? Is a bridge or partial more appropriate? Here’s a closer look at each restorative solution:
Bridges essentially “fill the gap” of missing teeth. They are typically anchored on either side by a crown, with a false tooth or teeth in between. Bridges can contain one or a few prosthetic teeth made of porcelain, alloy, gold or other material. Your bridge will be a fixed appliance, so you won’t have to remove it to care for it.
Partial dentures are much like dentures, as they are a removable appliance. However, partial dentures don’t offer a full set of false teeth. Instead, partials are customized to replace only the teeth that are missing within your smile. These false teeth are fixed on an acrylic gum-colored base that is carefully molded to fit your mouth. The metal framework underneath a partial is what holds this type of denture in place by connecting to your natural teeth.
Partial dentures typically involve a period of adjustment for patients, as eating and speaking may seem awkward at first. They also require special cleaning instructions, as you will remove the appliance each night.
Which Should You Choose?
Your teeth replacement choice is ultimately up to you. However, it should be noted that partial dentures are more commonly used when there are several teeth that need replacement, but not quite the entire arch of teeth. Bridges often are suggested when the gap of missing teeth is minor or on the same side of your mouth.
Other factors are simply a matter of personal preference and lifestyle needs. At Soft Touch Dentistry, we are happy to go over the pros and cons of each option. If the cost difference is holding you back, rest assured that our office offers flexible financing plans to help you get the teeth replacement solution you really need and want.
Posted on behalf of Dr. Sarah Thompson, Soft Touch Dentistry
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Soft Touch Dentistry
O’Fallon, IL 62269