Natural Teeth and Implants

Mrs. Ye has two missing teeth (Fig.1 M), which are replaced by a bridge for several years.  The latter is supported by two natural teeth (N).  Last year she got an implant tooth (I).  The common feature of the natural tooth and implant is that there is no shrinkage of gums over them (*).  The gums over the missing teeth are severely shrunken (X).  The latter is more obvious when we look at the missing teeth from the other side (Fig.2).  In fact there is a large gap between the fake tooth and the shrunken gums (arrow).  The big gap, which is also visible inside the mouth Fig.3), should be inconvenient to speaking and eating.  In one word, no teeth, no bone.  Natural tooth and implant maintain our bone.  Try to save our teeth as long as possible.  When they are no longer salvageable, extract and replace with implants as soon as possible or immediately.

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Xin Wei, DDS, PhD, MS 1st edition 05/29/2017, last revision 05/29/2017