All of your teeth play an important role in speaking, chewing, and maintaining proper alignment of other teeth. Tooth loss doesn’t necessarily have to occur as you age. But if you do lose teeth, they must be replaced to maintain proper function of your mouth.
Fortunately, there are options for correcting tooth loss.
A bridge is a set of multi-unit crowns that are fused, attaching to the adjacent “anchor” teeth on either side of the missing tooth space and thereby filling in the missing tooth space. These anchor teeth need to be reduced sufficiently to accommodate the crown abutments of the fixed bridge. The bridge is then cemented onto these anchor teeth.
If you’re missing one or more teeth, you may be aware of their importance to your appearance and dental health. Your teeth work together for many daily functions from eating to speaking. With missing teeth, it’s difficult to do these things. Missing teeth can and should be replaced.
However, with the advent of tooth implant technology, it is usually best to replace missing teeth with implants rather than replacing them with fixed bridges (since bridges require prepping and crowning of the teeth adjacent to the missing tooth). In many cases these adjacent teeth are sound and an implant of the missing tooth would mean not removing healthy sound tooth structure of the adjacent teeth.