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Fort Myers, FL Dental Office
Drs. Bass and Donovan Dentistry
5248 Red Cedar Drive, Suite 101
Fort Myers, FL 33907

What Are Your Options to Replace Missing Teeth?

   Drs. Bass and Donovan Dentistry are dedicated not only to providing exceptional dental services to the residents of Fort Myers but also to the maintenance of their oral health through education.  We hope you enjoy these blogs and welcome questions at any time. 

   Did you know that just a century ago nearly half of the population had no teeth?  While we have come extremely far from this point, still the fact remains that a large percentage of the population is missing at least one tooth. 

What are the Problems Associated with Missing Teeth?

   It is probably no news to you that missing teeth make chewing difficult and can pose significant social difficulties.  There are, however, a few other problems that missing teeth create that you may not be aware of.  First, when a tooth is lost, the bone that held it in no longer has the necessary stimulation from the presence of the tooth.  It begins to resorb, which is basically the bone eating itself away.  The impacts of this are greatest in the first year.  Second, teeth can drift in the mouth.  Often the teeth that were adjacent to the missing teeth will drift into the open site.  This presents difficulties that often have to be corrected with orthodontics. 

Options for Missing Teeth


    Traditionally, dentures have been the standard of care for the replacement of missing teeth in the upper and/or lower arch.  Dentures consist of a pink acrylic base that  holds acrylic or porcelain teeth.  Traditional dentures are not permanently affixed to the mouth so they can be removed for sleep.  Dentures can be the most cost effective of the treatments for replacement of all of the teeth in an arch. 

   New advancements in dentures have allowed for better stability and retention in the mouth through the use of dental implants.  The dentures will affix to the implants and prevent the rocking, slipping, and sliding that denture wearers often complain about. 

Removable Partial Dentures

   Removable partial dentures are indicated to replace one or more missing teeth.  These are made from the same material as the traditional dentures, but in addition use a metal framework that creates the strength.  Removable partial dentures utilize some of the mouth’s natural contours to retain the prosthesis in the mouth.  In addition, small metal wires engage existing natural teeth to help keep the denture in place.  Like traditional dentures, these are removed before bed. 

Here is a Video Illustrating the Creation of Removeable Partial Dentures


   Bridges are generally indicated to replace one missing tooth but sometimes can replace several adjacent teeth.  A bridge is a fixed solution to missing teeth.  If a tooth is missing, the two adjacent teeth are slightly reduced and capped with a “crown”.  This crown can be made of porcelain, gold, a combination of the two, or other variations.  These two crowns support a false tooth called a “pontic”.  This pontic replaces the missing tooth and the connectors on both sides of it are attached to the crowns.  This forms a bridge.


   Dental implants are the preferred treatment for the replacement of teeth for many situations.  Advancements in the implant technology have allowed dentists to attain goals that were not possible years ago.  A dental implant is essentially a titanium anchor that is gently placed into the bone to offer as a replacement for a root.  The bone grows together with the titanium in a process called osseointegration.  After this integration period, an abutment is placed on the implant.  This basically abuts the implant with the crown.  The crown is the visible portion of the tooth replacement that shows over the gums.  The result is a strong beautiful tooth replacement. 

If you have any questions or would like to meet us for a thorough consultation, call (239)939-4737 or contact us electronically.