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Dental Prosthesis: Why Do You Need It and How Is the Procedure Done?

Dental Prosthesis: Why Do You Need It and How Is the Procedure Done?

A dental prosthesis is an umbrella term used to refer to prosthetics used in dental medicine to replace missing teeth, parts of teeth, and even soft or hard structures of the jaw.

This procedure is extremely important. When there are gaps in your teeth, it can also mean your bite is affected. The teeth next to the space of the missing tooth or teeth can lean into the gap. This changes the way your upper and lower teeth come down together into a bite. Gaps in the teeth can also lead to food getting packed into them. And this can then cause tooth decay and gum disease.

Kinds of Dental Prostheses

With proper care, dental prostheses can last for years. This is, of course, considering that it is coupled with healthy dental practices at home and regular visits to the dentist. Different types of dental prostheses include the following:

  1. Dentures or partial dentures
  2. Dental implants
  3. Crowns
  4. Dental bridges

Dentures

Dentures replace all the natural teeth in either the upper or lower jaw. A partial denture fills in the spaces left by lost or missing teeth. Both attach to your natural teeth with metal clasps. And these clasps can either be metal or a newer, thermoplastic/flexible material.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are one of the most popular kinds of dental prostheses. They effortlessly blend in with the rest of your original teeth. The materials used are usually titanium and others that are compatible with the human body.

However, dentists recommend dental implants only to people who are in considerable good health. Those with chronic illnesses such as diabetes or leukemia may not be qualified to have dental implants. Dentists would also advise tobacco smokers against taking this procedure as all these factors could affect the healing process after the procedure.

Dental Crown

A crown is a type of dental prosthesis that focuses on a single tooth to make it stronger and to improve its appearance. Its purpose is to act as a support for a tooth with a large filling in the event that there isn’t much left of the original tooth to support the filling. Dentists also recommend it to cover discolored or badly shaped teeth as well as to blend a dental implant better.

Dental Bridge

Finally, a dental bridge is a kind of dental prosthesis that makes use of the teeth surrounding the gap to support the artificial tooth, replacing the original missing tooth or teeth.

Dental bridge procedures attach artificial teeth directly to the jaw or right under gum tissue. Usually, they are made of porcelain and precious metal. Lately, new bridges are completely made of a specific type of strong porcelain.

The success of this procedure is heavily dependent on the strength of the surrounding teeth, which is why this procedure is for patients whose remaining teeth are in good condition.

Dental Prosthesis Is Different for Every Person

One thing all these dental prostheses have in common is that their maintenance involves keeping the health of the remaining original teeth. Also, regular visits to the dentist are a must. This is necessary because it’s important to have dental prosthetics that fit the patient individually.

Everyone’s mouth is different, which is why dentists may recommend different dental prostheses for different people. At the end of the day, a dental professional can best determine which one will best fit the individual.

Learn more about Cosmetic Dentistry here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

A Dental Prosthesis From the Early Modern Age in Tuscany (Italy), https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/cid.12460, Accessed March 20, 2021

Dental Implants and How Crucial Replacing Teeth Really Is, https://www.dentalhealth.org/Blog/dental-implants-and-how-crucial-replacing-teeth-really-is, Accessed March 20, 2021

Bridges and Partial Dentures, https://www.dentalhealth.org/bridges-and-partial-dentures, Accessed March 20, 2021

Dentures, https://www.dentalhealth.org/dentures, Accessed March 20, 2021

Bridges, https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/b/bridges, Accessed March 20, 2021

Crowns, https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/c/crowns, Accessed March 20, 2021

Implants, https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/i/implants, Accessed March 20, 2021

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Written by Veronika Caraos Updated Nov 10, 2021
Medically reviewed by Grazielle Millo-Paderes, DDM, MSc