Exploring Options For Missing Tooth Replacement: How to Choose The Right One for You?


Do you find yourself hiding your smile in photos or even stifling a laugh because it makes you feel uncomfortable?

When you are missing a tooth, it can happen.

In addition to the difficulty in speaking and eating, your missing tooth can chip away at your confidence.

The American College of Prosthodontists indicates that approximately 178 million Americans had one or more missing teeth. That’s a whole lot of Americans who could be experiencing the negative effects of tooth loss. (1)

The good news is, there’s no need to settle for a gap toothed grin.

Modern dentistry offers a variety of amazing tooth replacement options that can restore both the look and function of your smile.

From natural looking implants that feel just like your own teeth to convenient dentures, there’s a solution for everyone.

Keep reading to explore these options, as this might help you find the perfect path to a smile you can confidently flash again.

Options for Tooth Replacement:

Dentist conducts medical examination of patient teeth. Dental clinic services concept

Several options are available for missing teeth replacement, each of them with its own advantages and disadvantages.

These are the following:

Dental implants

The most widely considered gold standard in tooth replacement is no other than dental implants.

This innovative technique involves surgically placing a biocompatible titanium screw into your jawbone.

Your jawbone will, over time, fuse with the implant to create a stable and solid foundation for a replacement tooth.

This artificial tooth, whether a crown or bridge, will be custom made by your cosmetic dentist to perfectly match your surrounding teeth.

Here’s what makes implants stand out:

Durability: Implants are very strong and, with proper care, can last a lifetime. Implants can apply the same amount of force to biting and chewing as natural teeth.

Natural look and feel: Implants look and feel incredibly natural. The custom made crown can seamlessly blend in with your existing teeth and give you a beautiful and confident smile.

Oral health benefits: Unlike bridges, implants don’t require altering healthy teeth. This helps preserve your natural tooth structure and promotes long term oral health.

Bone preservation: Dental implants actually stimulate your jawbone, which prevents bone loss from occurring with missing teeth. This helps maintain a healthy jaw structure and prevents facial sagging.

Things to consider:

Cost: Dental implants are widely known to be the most expensive tooth replacement option. The cost of each tooth can range between USD$3,000 to USD$4,500. Meanwhile, if you need a mouthful of implants, you can expect to pay between USD$60,000 and USD$90,000. (2)

Procedure: Implant placement is a surgical process that will require ample healing time. While advancements have made the process less invasive, some discomfort can be expected.

Dental bridges

Dental bridges offer a reliable and cost effective solution for people who need to replace one or more missing teeth.

For starters, a bridge is a series of connected crowns with artificial teeth in the middle to seal the gap of the missing teeth.

The bridge will be anchored to healthy teeth on either side of the gap, which requires preparation work to ensure a secure fit.

Here’s why bridges are a popular choice:

Longevity: Bridges can generally last between five to 15 years when well maintained. (3)

Improved function: Bridges can restore chewing ability and help prevent surrounding teeth from shifting.

Aesthetics: Modern bridges are made from high quality materials that look natural and enhance your smile.

Things to consider:

Altering healthy teeth: Unlike implants, bridges require preparing healthy teeth on either side of the gap to support the bridge. This involves removing some tooth structure.

Maintenance: Bridges require careful cleaning to prevent decay around the supporting teeth and under the bridge itself.

Potential for future issues: Over time, the bridge might need to be replaced, especially if the supporting teeth become damaged.


Dentures are removable dental appliances that can substitute a full set of missing teeth in the upper, lower, or both jaws.

They are typically made from acrylic resin and have plastic teeth attached.

Dentures can be full or partial, depending on how many missing teeth you have.

Here’s why dentures might be a good fit:

Cost effectiveness: Dentures are generally the most affordable option for replacing multiple missing teeth.

Enhanced function: Like dental bridges, dentures can help restore chewing ability and help with speech.

Removable: Unlike implants, dentures can be taken out for cleaning and soaking overnight.

Things to consider:

Removable nature: Due to their removable nature, dentures can slip or click while talking or eating, which can be a source of discomfort and embarrassment.

Bone loss: Missing teeth contribute to jawbone loss. Dentures don’t stimulate the jawbone the same way natural teeth or implants do, which can lead to facial sagging over time.

Maintenance: Dentures require regular cleaning and proper care to maintain hygiene and prevent slippage.

How to Choose The Right Option for You?

When deciding on a tooth replacement option, there are several factors to consider, namely:

Cost: As emphasized earlier, dental implants are normally the most expensive option, while dentures are the most affordable.

Longevity or durability: Dental implants are made to last a lifetime, while bridges and dentures may need to be replaced after several years.

Oral health: Dental implants and bridges require healthy surrounding teeth and adequate bone density, while dentures don’t have these requirements.

Lifestyle: Dentures require more maintenance and may restrict certain foods, while implants and bridges allow for a more normal diet.

Your cosmetic dentist can help you weigh the pros and cons of each option and determine the best choice for your individual needs and preferences.

What You Should Remember?

Missing teeth can seriously impact your appearance, oral health, and overall quality of life.

Thankfully, multiple options are available for replacing missing teeth, including dental implants, bridges, and dentures.

So, don’t let missing teeth keep you from wearing a confident smile.

Explore your options, discuss them with your dentist, and take the first step toward a brighter, healthier you.


(1) “Drill-Free Dental Implants: An Easier, More Affordable Way To Replace A Tooth”, Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/geristengel/2023/04/19/drill-free-dental-implants-an-easier-more-affordable-way-to-replace-a-tooth/?sh=286d606153fa

(2) “How Much Do Dental Implants Cost In 2024?”, Source: https://www.forbes.com/health/dental/how-much-dental-implants-cost/

(3) “Dental Bridges”, Source: https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/10921-dental-bridges

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