5 Best Tooth Replacement Options

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A single missing tooth can have an impact on your smile and your confidence. There are many potential causes for missing teeth, including tooth decay, genetics, gum disease, trauma, and more. However, no matter what has caused your missing teeth, you need to consider replacement options to avoid issues with your oral health and ultimately your overall health in the future.

At Springhill Dental Health Center, Dr. Byron Scott offers several options for replacing missing teeth. After all, even one missing tooth can affect your ability to speak clearly, chew food thoroughly, jawbone integrity, and cause remaining teeth to shift into empty spaces.

In this article, we’ll discuss the 5 tooth replacement options offered by Dr. Scott and the team.

5 Ways to Replace a Missing Tooth

Below are the 5 tooth replacement options offered at Springhill Dental Health Center:

1. Dental Implants

Dental Implant - tooth replacement optionsDental implants are one of the most popular options for tooth replacement. Implants are a permanent solution designed to look, feel, and function like natural teeth. Dental implants can be used to replace a single tooth or can be used as support for a dental bridge or denture. When properly cared for, dental implants can last a lifetime and the success rate is around 95%.

However, the process does take some time- at least several months for most patients and up to a year or more for others. This process starts with placing titanium screws into the jawbone, which acts as a tooth root. Once healed, an abutment (connector piece) will be placed to attach the crown to the implant.

Advantages of Dental Implants

  • One of the most effective tooth replacement options
  • Natural look, feel, and functionality
  • Remaining neighboring teeth are not impacted
  • Permanent solution, may last a lifetime with proper care and maintenance (oral hygiene habits and regular dental visits)

Disadvantages of Dental Implants

  • One of the most expensive tooth replacement solutions
  • Implant is inserted into the jawbone, which requires invasive oral surgery, long healing time, and potential for infection

2. Implant-Supported Bridge

For patients who are missing several teeth in a row, Dr. Scott often recommends an implant-supported bridge. This requires the placement of two dental implants- one on each side of the gap. A dental bridge is attached to the implants to replace the missing teeth in the gap.

Advantages of Implant-Supported Bridges

  • Budget-friendly option for replacing several missing teeth
  • Natural looking
  • Just as effective as replacing each tooth with a single implant

Disadvantages of Implant-Supported Bridges

  • Can only be used in patients missing several teeth in a row
  • Implants are permanent, but the bridge is not- you will need to replace the bridge after several years. However, you can increase the life expectancy of the bridge with proper care.
  • Requires several visits to the dentist for placement- and requires oral surgery for the implant placement

3. Traditional Bridge

A traditional bridge requires neighboring teeth for support instead of placing implants on each side of the gap. Neighboring teeth are filed down to make room for a crown to be placed. A bridge will be attached to the crowns to replace the missing teeth in the gap. This also takes several visits.

Advantages of Traditional Bridges

  • Similar look and feel of dental implants
  • Less invasive procedure since there is no surgery required
  • More budget-friendly than single dental implants or implant-supported bridges

Disadvantages of Traditional Bridges

  • Neighboring teeth must be filed down to accommodate a crown, increasing the risk of infection and decay in the future
  • If bridge isn’t fitted properly, risk of damage to adjoining teeth is increased
  • Food particles may get under the bridge and be hard to clean- which may increase your risk of infection and bone loss

4. Removable Partial Dentures

tooth replacement options - Removable Partial DenturesRemovable partials are a simpler solution than dental implants for replacing missing teeth. This is an option for patients who still have some natural teeth but are missing too many to be replaced by a dental bridge. Removable partials are attached in place with metal or plastic clasps.

Advantages of Removable Partial Dentures

  • In many cases, additional teeth can be added if more teeth are lost in the future, saving time and money
  • One of the most budget-friendly options for tooth replacement
  • Easy to repair/replace if required
  • Procedure is simple, only requiring placement of the clasps onto neighboring teeth

Disadvantages of Removable Partial Dentures

  • Can be uncomfortable
  • Must be removed daily for cleaning and before sleeping
  • Metal clasps are often visible, making them less natural-looking than other options

5. Flipper Tooth

A flipper tooth is a temporary partial that can be flipped in and out of its position, which is how it gets its name. This tooth replacement solution does not require neighboring teeth for support.

Advantages of Flipper Tooth

  • Fairly cheap, painless option for replacing missing teeth
  • Much lighter than partial dentures
  • Provides a temporary solution until a more permanent one is available

Disadvantages of Flipper Tooth

  • Can be uncomfortable
  • Since it is temporary, the bulky design increases the risk of breakage

Schedule Your Appointment Today

If you are in or near Mobile, Alabama, and are interested in learning more about your tooth replacement options, schedule your appointment with Dr. Scott and the team at Springhill Dental Health Center today. We offer several different ones, each with advantages and disadvantages. During your consultation, Dr. Scott will explain your options and help you determine which one is best for you.

In many cases, dental insurance will cover a portion of tooth replacement solutions. Our wonderful office staff will work with your provider to determine coverage.
We are available Tuesday through Thursday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. We are located on Springhill Avenue in Mobile, Alabama, and look forward to meeting you and helping you with your dental needs.

What our Patients say about us


My visit was incredible. I had my “All on Four” appliances cleaned, and it was a painless and thorough experience. Dr. Scott and all his staff are very friendly. During the cleaning, Mary was gentle and let me know everything she was doing and how it would feel. She gave me tips on how to clean my implants/appliances better and gave me a small brush to do the underside more effectively. Dr. Scott and Mary suggest cleanings take place every 3 months so I will be back in December.

Bette D.
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Meet Dr. Byron C. Scott

Dr. Byron Scott is a highly-trained and accomplished dentist. He attended The University of Alabama School of Dentistry and subsequently completed numerous Advanced Studies and Trainings. Dr. Scott is Board-Certified by The Academy of General Dentistry and has earned Mastership status (MAGD), an honor shared by only 1% of dentists. He has numerous memberships and associations, including Diplomate status with The American Board of Oral Implantology (D-ABOI) and The International Congress of Oral Implantologists (D-ICOI). Overall, Dr. Scott has dedicated his life and career to helping patients improve their oral health through expert dentistry. His goal is to help each patient keep their smile healthy, attractive, and comfortable for the duration of their lifetime.

Learn More About Dr. Scott
Springhill Dental Health Center

Office Information

4620 Springhill Ave, Mobile, AL 36608, United States
9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Tuesday to Thursday:
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
New Patients Only: 
(251) 265-7808
All Other Callers: 
(251) 343-1521

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