Via this post, we will shed light on various dental prostheses types and which you should consider for yourself.
Are you missing one or several of your teeth or maybe all your teeth?
If this sounds like you, then you must be searching for the best teeth replacement option.
Read ahead as we discuss in-depth about different dental prostheses types, their uses, benefits and drawbacks.
Dental prostheses can be broadly divided into removable, fixed and then comes dental implants. Dental prostheses are devices that replace missing teeth and repair and save damaged teeth. These dental devices not only provide you with better functionality but also improves your facial aesthetics and smile, which in turn boosts self-esteem and confidence.
DENTAL CROWNS; The most common dental prosthesis type
Dental crowns can be thought of as a cap that fits over the intended tooth. It can be used to cover and save a decayed, damaged, discoloured or broken tooth. Dental crowns restore the shape, size, strength and functionality of a tooth. It reinforces a damaged tooth and saves it from further harm, thus prolonging its life in the oral cavity.
Dental crowns also form an essential component of dental bridges and fit over the abutment teeth (supporting teeth).
Dental crowns can be made from the following materials:
- Base metal alloys
- Metal fused to Porcelain
- All-Ceramic (Completely made from Porcelain)
- All resin
- Other systems such as E-max
The typical process of getting a dental crown:
- The first step is to remove any dental decay, if present, and fill it with a dental cavity filling material. If the decay in not big enough to consider a crown the tooth may be restored with an Onlay.
- Next, the tooth is trimmed and prepared to make space for a dental crown.
- Then a dental impression is taken of your upper and lower jaw, which serves as a guide for making your dental crown.
- The shade of your crown is decided in the same appointment, and a temporary crown is given.
- In the following appointment, your crown will be fabricated and tried. The dentist will check for the colour matching, fit and bite.
- If everything is proper, your crown will be fitted with the help of dental cement that acts as glue.
- A dental crown protects a damaged and decayed tooth.
- It reinforces a tooth and saves it from further damage.
- It prolongs the life of the tooth.
- It restores the tooth’s shape, size, colour, strength and functionality.
- It improves chewing and speech.
- Porcelain, zirconia and resin crowns offer superior aesthetics and can be manipulated to match your exact tooth shade. This further improves and completes your smile.
- A complete smile will give you a youthful appearance and boosts your self-confidence.
- Dental crowns, especially ones made from Zirconia, are expensive. Metal crowns are generally the cheapest.
- In some cases, you may experience sensitivity, especially if the crown is not made well or the defect is significant.
- Porcelain fused to a metal crown is prone to chipping. The ceramic may chip off, which exposes the metal underneath. This mandates additional repair.
- Resin crowns may fracture under heavy load and require additional repairs.
You can consider getting a dental bridge as a dental prosthesis type if you are missing one or more teeth. A dental bridge is like a compromise between dentures and implants.
As the name suggests, a dental bridge fills the gap left by missing teeth.
A dental bridge comprises two parts, the false teeth and the supporting dental crowns. The false teeth, called pontics, are suspended in the area of missing teeth and are anchored to the natural teeth, known as abutments.
A bridge can be made from the following materials:
- Base metal alloys
- Other systems such as resins, Procera and E-max.
A typical process for getting a Dental Bridge:
- In your first appointment, the dentist will examine your oral cavity and plan your treatment.
- Next, the anchor teeth or abutments are trimmed and prepared to create space for dental crowns.
- A dental impression will then be taken of your upper and lower jaw. The colour of your bridge will also be decided and selected in this appointment.
- This impression is then sent to the lab, which fabricates your bridge.
- In the next appointment, a trial bridge is made, which is tried. Minor adjustments, if needed, are done during this stage and bite checked.
- Once everything is proper, the bridge is finalised, and you are scheduled for your final appointment.
- Once the final bridge is ready, you are called in for an appointment, and the bridge is placed with the help of dental cements on anchor teeth.
The entire process of getting a dental bridge can take 2-3 weeks.
- It is fixed.
- Completes your smile and boosts self-confidence.
- Provides good aesthetics if made from Porcelain or Zirconia.
- Restore functions such as chewing and speech.
- Tends to have a long lifespan, over 15 years, with good oral care.
- Healthy teeth have to be trimmed.
- This may cause the anchor teeth to develop sensitivity, and they end up sustaining added pressure.
- This can lead to problems with the anchor teeth.
Dentures;The most affordable type of dental prosthesis
Dentures are removable dental prostheses that can be used to replace one, more than one or all the teeth. Dentures are one of the oldest dental prostheses and are quite common. They can be opted for by almost everyone and rarely are contraindicated.
A typical process of getting a denture:
- The first step is to take an impression of the upper and lower jaw.
- Next false gums are made, and your bite is registered.
- This is used to place the false teeth in the proper position.
- This temporary setting is tried in your mouth, and you will be asked to speak certain lines, and certain movements are registered to ensure a proper bite.
- This assembly is then sent to the lab, where your final dentures are fabricated with the help of acrylic.
- In the next appointment, these dentures are again checked for the bite, and you will be explained their proper use.
- Getting dentures is a non-invasive procedure and does not require any surgery or trimming of teeth.
- They can replace all the teeth and create a complete smile.
- Enables you to chew and speak properly.
- They are removable, which makes practising oral hygiene easy.
- They can get dislodged.
- Does not return complete chewing and affects enunciation.
- Does not stop the process of bone loss.
- Alters facial proportions.
- Have to be replaced often as they are prone to wearing off.
- Does not offer a permanent solution.
- Requires added care.
- It may irritate the gums.
Dental Implants; The most preferred dental prosthesis type
Dental implants are screw-shaped surgical fixtures that are placed in the jawbone through an incision on the gums.
They are fixed to the bone and derive direct support from the bone. Dental implants can be used to replace a single missing tooth, more than one tooth or all the teeth.
They form a foundation over which a dental crown, bridge or denture can be fixed.
A typical process of getting a dental implant:
- After examination, you will be scheduled for your dental implant surgery.
- Depending on the number of dental implants and the prostheses, an incision is given on the gums to expose the bone.
- Specialised dental implant drills are used to create a space, and a dental implant is inserted.
- The incision is sutured, and dental implants are left for three months to integrate with the jawbone. If you are scheduled for immediate loading implants, temporary prostheses will be placed after implant placement.
- Once the implant heals, a permanent prosthesis (crown, bridge or denture) is placed and fixed.
In some situations where bone length or width is inadequate, additional procedures such as sinus lift or bone grafting may be advised.
- It is a fixed teeth replacement solution.
- Dental implants prevent bone loss by stimulating the jawbone.
- Maintain facial proportions.
- Reduces the appearance of wrinkles and gives a youthful appearance.
- Dental implants derive support from the bone, so additional teeth need not be disturbed.
- They prevent migration of remaining teeth and betters oral health.
- Provides a stable bite.
- Restores complete chewing, unlike dentures.
- No food restrictions.
- Once healed, they do not require any additional care, just practice regular dental hygiene.
- Restores proper speech.
- Gives excellent aesthetic results.
- Lasts a lifetime with proper oral care.
- Dental implants have a long treatment phase.
- They are expensive.
The best prostheses for you will depend on many factors like time, overall health, dental health and finances.
Therefore, the best way to figure out which dental prostheses types you must consider is to contact your dentist for a dental appointment. Depending on your needs and expectation we arrive at the most favourable solution.
*Special thanks to our artist Dumitru Leahu who shares the same passion as us. Feel free to appreciate his work @truedentalstories
We hope this article provided you with the needed insights on Dental prostheses types. If you have not yet received an answer to your questions, do not hesitate to ask us any question in the section below, we will answer as soon as possible. If you find this article useful, we invite you to leave us a comment in the comments section.