The Dental Office of:

  Dr Samuel Barr


Dental Implant Decision Tree: One Missing Tooth

Implant Option
Bridge Option
A dental implant is placed, designed to function as the root of a tooth. A crown is attached to the implant.
The teeth on either side of the missing tooth are shaped for crowns. The bridge is basically the missing tooth with a crown on each side to hold it in. This is cemented in place.
The end result in either case: a replacement tooth that does not come out at night.

So Which is Better for You?



Well, "It Depends"... There are a number of factors that go into the decision

In Favor of an IMPLANT...

The teeth on either side of the missing tooth have never had a cavity or a filling...   Because in order to replace the missing tooth with a bridge, it would be necessary to cut these virgin teeth down. That would be a shame.

One or both teeth on either side of the missing tooth has had a root canal treatment...  Because statistics show that bridges placed in this instance have a shorter average lifespan than an implant replacement.




In Favor of a BRIDGE...

The teeth on either side of the missing tooth already have large fillings...If the teeth on either side might benefit from having crowns placed, then a bridge might be more cost effective.


There is not enough bone available to support an implant... Although an implant may be possible, and even desirable, it becomes more complicated when you have to grow the bone to support an implant.

Other Factors.

Esthetics: In either case, getting good esthetics for a front tooth replacement can be challenging. You may have a particular situation that would favor either a bridge or an implant over the other.


Health and Habits: Diabetes is considered a relative contra-indication for dental implants. Smokers have more problems with implants than non-smokers. Both implants and conventional bridges will likely last longer if your oral hygiene is good.


The above should be considered as a guide and a basis of discussion only. Many other factors go into the decision as to what would be best for you.



As always, send your questions to