First impressions count, right? One of the first things people will notice on meeting a new person is how they look. We can all take care of our grooming by visiting the hair salon and buying flattering clothes. There is one thing however, that cannot be overlooked and that is bad or missing teeth. A healthy smile enhances natural attractiveness and shows that you are a person who takes care of themselves. At any age, we may lose teeth through accidents, infection, or gum disease, but there are solutions. Let’s look at three options on how you can smile with confidence again.

1. Bridge

One of the tried and tested options to replace a missing tooth is a “bridge”. A bridge spans the gap between two fixed points, so in dental terms it is a structure that is placed onto the adjoining teeth with a new tooth to replace the one that is missing. There are several different types of bridge, usually with a foundation of gold or another type of metal, and porcelain is bonded to this creating a new tooth. This procedure does involve shaping the adjoining teeth to fit the bridge, but it can be a good solution if there is only a single tooth to replace.

2. Dentures

These have been around for decades but have improved considerably as technology has advanced. Traditionally dentures were a prosthetic device which replaced lost teeth and tissue, and which were fitted to the gum but can be removed for cleaning. It’s still possible to get full and partial dentures today which can be colour matched to any existing teeth to give a natural effect. Some patients however want a more natural feeling of stability and use with their new teeth, so a new technique of permanently fixing the denture to the bone has revolutionised this form of treatment. Implant-retained dentures are now the gold standard if you opt for this kind of treatment.

3. Implants

If you want a solution that most closely replicates having stable natural teeth that perform as well as your original ones, dental implants will probably be your first choice of treatment. This breakthrough in dental care involves drilling a titanium post into the bone, with a porcelain crown mounted on top. The key advantages of this technique mean that the adjoining teeth require no adjustment, thus keeping the enamel intact and the tooth stronger. Secondly, dental implants allow you to floss between the teeth just as you would with your natural teeth. Thirdly, there is no instability or displacement of the tooth. It will perform just like, if not better, than your own tooth. It’s a very versatile treatment that can be used to replace one or multiple teeth, and it boasts a 96-97% success rate. More importantly, it’s a treatment that is suitable for most patients, but consultation with your practitioner should be sought.

The psychological impact of losing a tooth can be very damaging for a person’s confidence. It isn’t, thankfully, the end of the world. There is a range of solutions for every individual circumstance that will help you smile with confidence again.