Dental implants vs: permanent bridge

  1. Ok a little brief history.
    My daughter (now 15) has a hereditary condition where some of her adult teeth never formed so could never come in to replace the baby teeth.
    She has gone through braces but is missing 2 molars on each side of her lower jaw.
    We talked to a periodontist yesterday and he said we could go either way. He stated that the bone may not be thick enough for implants but he could do a bone graft on each side and after 6 months of healing he would do the implants. So we will do tomograph x-rays to determine if that is needed.
    Permanent bridges are an option but that there may be problems down the road as there is filing of the teeth involved and there are increased chance for stress for those teeth and increased chance for decay.
    Anyone have implants or permanent bridges? Any problems?
    Love them? Hate them?
    -Russell
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  2. 17 Comments

  3. by   Dplear
    My ex girlfriend (and still good freind) is a dentist and I am actually thinking of going to dental school...Her and her husband have both told me that dental implants are the way to go. They tend to last longer and are more comfortable and have better results than bridges. I need to have a cracked molar replaces and she is encouraging me to have an implant put in. (and I know she is not doing it for the money...she is not charging me for it,and she already has done several thou worth of dental work on me free....but that is another thread: guys who let ex's stick needles in their mouth...hehe)

    Dave
  4. by   baseline
    Well...one of my co-workers has had alot of dental work, and has had bone grafts and implants. Too soon for a long term verdict, but she has a great big smile. I do know that alot of the work she had done was the result of improper work done by other dental professionals. So I guess unless you have the utmost confidence in your peridontist, I would get a second opinion.

    Brrrrrrrrrrr.....i just had oral surgery.....still hurting.....I love my current periterroist, but I too suffer from past dental errors.
  5. by   DIPLOMATICRN4HIRE
    A good friend of mine was in a MVA, facial damage and alot of teeth knocked out and she shallowed a few of them. During her healing process she was considering both. Since she worked in the OR with us she asked a few of the Dentists that came in about what to do... All of them stated that implants were the best of all, due to the stress and the ability for other teeth to shift without difficulty. She had it done, I circulated the case, and It was one of the most interesting cases I had been in. Its usually an office procedure but she had 5 teeth implanted and needed longer sedation, and monitoring due to a cardiac condition. She had a short recovery period just because the OR was short at the time but she didnt have any problems with them. They look great.
    Zoe
  6. by   semstr
    funny you should post this! Just had oral surgery on thursday, a big nasty molar was pulled out, after 3 (!) rootresections that didn't work. And now I have to decide too. My problem is that my jaw has been through a lot, with cyste and abcesses (sp?), so a bridge would be better at the moment.
    But I just read something about "sticky" bridges, where they only have to take a tiny little piece of the healthy teeth away.

    Baseline I feel for you!
  7. by   passing thru
    Why not get a 2nd professional opinion?
    Is it the 1st or 2nd molar that is missing? , the 3rd molar

    is not in yet, right? the 3rd is the wisdom teeth. Do the x-rays show she has them...the wisdom teeth?

    Does she have a preference?
    I don't understand why a bridge would create more decay problems. When she is older, she could have crowns put on the two anchor teeth and have the bridge built into the crowns...is that the way they want to go now?

    I personally would go least invasive, bridge, just to have the spacer tooth in there to keep all the other teeth from moving around. Then, if I ever did have a decay problem, I'd go the crown bridge route....which would last nearly forever with proper oral hygiene.

    Where does the bone come from? Sterile cadaver bone I guess and they don't have to worry about it weakening, no rejection problems, etc.?

    A permanent bridge doesn't really mean permanent. It just means that you don't take it out at night and drop it in the polident bowl.

    All oral interventions have life spans. I have had crowns replaced due to chipping. And I have a couple that are 30 years old and as good as the day I got them.

    Bridges usually last 20-30 years. Just tell her not to eat popcorn, jawbreakers, and ice all day.

    Is her dentist a specialist in his field?
  8. by   adrienurse
    Go with whatever ages the best, I guess. I don't know anything about teeth (most of my patients lack them LOL).
  9. by   researchrabbit
    My dad (now 81) has had a bridge since his 40s, no problems...but if the choice were mine, I'd have implants, just from what I've read about them.
  10. by   globalRN
    Sister is married to a dentist. She had implants.
    I have a cracked molar for which I have had lots of work done...
    I was offered options to get a bridge or an implant.
    I would also choose the implant rather than risk damaging 2 perfectly healthy teeth to anchor a bridge. Implants are more expensive and painful than a bridge but should last a lifetime.
    Cleaning around bridges can be difficult...would hate to lose several teeth d/t periodontitis.
  11. by   Tweety
    I'm getting an implant. But going to the poorhouse first to reserve my room after the bills come.

    For myself, the implant seemed like getting my now nonfunctioning useless tooth back.
  12. by   howie122832
    Worked in Dentistry for 10 years! Seen it all! GO for the implants and bone grafts. They may be more expensive now, but will be better for her down the road. If she were my daughter, I would go implants.. no question.
  13. by   nurs4kids
    My mom and sis are hygenist..

    Mom's retired and did so before implants became big business, but sis is right in the middle of the "implant push".

    A few months ago, mom had the bone graft and the implants done on herself. She was very hesitant to do them, but after much debate she decided to go for it. As far as I know, she's had no problems with them lately, but she did have a lot of pain and irritation throughout the couple of months she was going through the grafting. Her's was not an option of bridge vs implant, as she'd already had a bridge. I KNOW if that had been an option, she would have gone with the bridge.

    I would research it thouroughly, Russell as I KNOW there is a CHANCE of rejection...

    also, if your daughter opts for a bridge now, does that rule out the option of implants later??

    as for a second opinion..
    dentist are like lawyers..they love kickbacks..I guarantee you if you go to ten dentist, each one will recommend implants..and probably a different referral from each. Implants bring them more $$$ than a bridge.

    another thing to weigh is How good is your daughter's oral hygiene??? I know you said this was hereditary, but on top of that, does she have excellent oral hygiene? I've seen parents pay big bucks for oral care only to have the child let it ruin.

    good luck russell!!
  14. by   Zee_RN
    I have one dental implant. I dreaded the procedure because I HATE dental work. But it was no problem, very little pain, nothing that plain old ibuprofen couldn't take care of.

    I've had no complications with the implant. I would heartily recommend it.

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