Discover your perfect dental care options with a dental bridge or an implant

Discover your perfect dental care options with a dental bridge or an implant

Learn more about the pros and cons of dental bridges and implants with our dental advice.

However well we look after our teeth, no-one is immune from losing one of them. In order to ensure that there are no gaps in our smile, we may need an artificial tooth. But what is best: An implant or a bridge? Victoria considers the pros and cons of both.

How do they work?

In general a bridge is made of metal and is blended with tooth-coloured ceramics. The teeth to the left and right of the gap are used as pillars and attached to an artificial bridge.

In the case of an implant, an artificial tooth root is inserted. The dentist drills a 2 mm hole in the jawbone into which the root, usually a titanium cylinder, is screwed in. A temporary denture is then attached. The implant needs between four weeks and four months to heal. At this point the temporary denture can be replaced with a crown.

What are the advantages?

A bridge is relatively easy to fit and is the more cost-effective version. Also, in contrast to the implant, no operation is necessary. Particular advantage: If the two teeth next to a gap are already damaged, their appearance will also be enhanced.

Implants are particularly secure and are the most natural looking solution of all the methods. Because we place pressure on the roots when we chew, bone loss that can occur with a bridge does not happen with an implant. Through regular care with an electric toothbrush, such as the Oral-B TriZone 600, implants can last a lifetime, whilst a bridge has to be replaced after around 15 years.

Are there any risks?

In order to prepare for a bridge, the dentist must grind down two healthy teeth to close the gap. It is possible that nerves might be damaged in the process or that the ground teeth die later on, but this is a worst case scenario and rarely occurs. The jawbone is not stressed in the area of the bridge. This type of denture can slip or wobble.

Fitting an implant is a medical intervention and thus entails the associated risks. Also the process lasts several months, since the implant has to heal, which can also give rise to complications in the healing process. In addition, patients with periodontitis, poorly controlled diabetes, osteoporosis, severe cardiovascular disease or who are taking specific medication may be advised against having an implant.

What does it cost?

A simple bridge lies in the region of 800 euros for standard care. Your health insurance will generally pay half of this.

In the case of an implant you must reckon with bills of up to 2,000 to 3,000 euros. The fixed payment from your health insurance of 400 euros seems relatively meagre here.

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