There are a number of ways to replace a missing tooth. These prosthetic teeth can be as beautiful and functional as the original tooth (or even better).
It is important to note that it is easiest to replace a tooth immediately following an extraction. After a tooth has been extracted, the adjacent teeth may shift towards the empty space to compensate for the missing tooth, shrinking the space available. In addition, the jawbone will remodel once a tooth has been removed, shrinking in dimension. Over time, as there is less space and bone strength to work with, replacing a tooth may require the assistance of a dental specialist to ensure success.
A common treatment option for patients who are missing one or more teeth is a dental bridge. A bridge is, in fact, a fixed partial denture where prosthetic replacement teeth are permanently attached to adjacent natural teeth. An important advantage of a dental bridge (over a removable partial denture) is its superior “functionality” – i.e. better support and stability.