What Patients with Missing Teeth Must Know

Losing a tooth in the upper or lower jaws for good has got to be one of the scariest experiences. 

Hugely impacting your confidence, teeth lost either to gum disease, tooth decay, genetics or injury can be a big problem!

The negative effects don’t stop there. Edentulism refers to the loss of permanent teeth and when gaps in the mouth are left ignored patients can be at risk of greater and broader health consequences.


Is it wrong to have missing teeth?

When a tooth is no longer present, the gum loses a lot of its natural protection against debris, thus heightening the risk of gum disease.

This can inflame the gum, contribute to a reduction in jaw bone density and even cause further tooth loss.

Leading restorative dentist Dr Rifai has seen first-hand the effects that missing teeth can have on the condition of your oral health and hygiene.

  • When you lose a tooth, the natural roots that once embedded into your jawbone are no longer there, putting pressure on surrounding teeth to hold the weight. Almost all patients with missing teeth experience bone loss.
  • Bone does not grow back, and patients can experience a depletion in bone density within just six months of losing the tooth. This will require bone grafts surgery before any reconstructive surgery can be scheduled.
  • Other teeth can shift as gaps are present, which can impact the entire bite. The risk of periodontal disease and gum recession is also high.
  • Patients can expect the shape and the structure of their face to change as teeth impact facial aesthetics.

That’s why it’s crucial to replace a missing tooth as soon as possible to protect and preserve the oral state.

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The best options to replace missing teeth permanently

Which type of prosthetic or prosthesis will work for you? All the options implant dentistry can offer:

There are multiple restorative solutions to replace teeth lost.

The most popular replacement methods tend to include Bridges, Partial Dentures / Implant-Retained Dentures and Titanium Implants.

However, in recent years, patients with missing teeth have been moving away from older, less reliable treatments like dentures and bridges and opting for dental implants, which can last a lifetime.

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Quick contact


Solutions for missing front teeth:

Single implants are likely to be prescribed in this situation because they will be the simplest and easiest way to restore stability and aesthetics.

It will take three months, once the implant has been placed into your jawbone to fuse, we call this a period of healing or osseointegration.

The artificial teeth screw into the implant – offering more security to cemented implants.

Dental bridges can be used to replace a single tooth, however, it may not be the most natural-looking solution for patients wanting to replace front teeth. The same can be said for dentures in this scenario.


Several teeth missing:

Dental bridges can be a cost-effective solution. They are a tried and tested method of replacing several teeth in one go.

The bridge is comprised of a false tooth or teeth and is attached to neighbouring teeth on either side of the spaced area.

For a more natural-looking smile, patients can combine bridges with implantation treatments, for example; implant-supported bridges.

Individual implants can be used to replace multiple gaps across the mouth either individually, or together.

Patients can save money on treatment by combining procedures like dentures that are clipped onto implants in strategic positions.


New teeth for complete tooth loss:

These are often complex cases and require a lot of work and careful attention from an experienced dental professional or prosthodontist.

Often in situations like this, we would recommend procedures like All-on-Four, so patients can save money by only purchasing implants that act as an anchor in all four corners of the mouth.

All on Four are full-arch fixed implant bridges that support either four or six dental implants at once.

The procedure offers minimal discomfort and cheaper rates than single tooth implants.

Other alternative, more affordable treatments include implant-retained dentures or implant-supported bridges.

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Replacing missing teeth cost

Alternatives to artificial teeth:

  • Maryland Bridge: £650
  • Fixed Bridge: £575 per unit
  • Dental Implant (porcelain dental crown and abutment teeth): £1,900
  • Bone Grafting: £400-2,000
  • Sinus Lift: £650-1,200
  • All on 4/6 (Full arch): £9,995
  • Zygoma: £19,995
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The cheapest way to pay for implant surgery

Looking to replace a number of teeth on a budget?

Honestly, when it comes to replacing teeth, you should not be looking for cheap solutions.

Your natural teeth are very strong and help you in lots of different ways you may not even realise.

Comprising on the cost of these treatments will mean that you are choosing lower-quality treatments by non-experienced or specialist dentists.

Tooth replacement can be expensive depending on the treatment you choose but remember it comes at a cost for a reason, especially in the case of dental implants, which require very little maintenance and last practically forever.

Patients can spread the cost however with 0% finance options, which will allow for no-interest payments for up to 24 months.

Implants are not free on the NHS as they dramatically enhance your appearance, so are therefore considered cosmetic in nature.

Edward CrameEdward Crame
13:43 04 Dec 21
Very happy with all aspects of the work they have done. Very clean, professional and well run business.
Lynn HuddartLynn Huddart
12:43 24 Nov 21
Dr Ali Rifai was professional and I am very pleased with the outcome of my Invisalign's. I have been with this practice for many years and would highly recommend. The staff are very friendly and nothing is an issue.
Jonathan PlumbJonathan Plumb
11:52 24 Nov 21
Can't thank this practice enough for all their help. I don't post reviews very often, so when I do, it's because an impression has been left! Dr Ali saw me at short notice to help fix a broken tooth. The nurse (I think her name was Danni) was so helpful and kind, as were the rest of the team. Thank you for being there for me in my hour of need (the same day i asked for an appointment!)

Is it OK not to replace a missing tooth?

Do you want healthy teeth? Then replacing missing teeth is important. It is against our medical advice that you keep gaps in your mouth.

Fortunately, the dental implants offered by The Gentle Dental provide the ideal solution to tooth loss. By anchoring a new tooth within the jaw itself, there is no need for temporary and unreliable solutions such as dentures, and the procedure is simple and painless.

Why is replacing missing teeth important?

Further tooth loss often occurs as the neighbouring teeth attempt to fill the gap left by the missing tooth.

As they do, the gum gradually recedes until the teeth begin to loosen. This process typically continues until the teeth find new points of contact or fall out entirely.

These unwanted movements also create problems of their own; by creating new spaces in the mouth, food and debris get trapped, increasing the likelihood of periodontal disease later on.

The knock-on effects of tooth loss extend beyond the gums, however.

Teeth play a central role in the health and structure of the jaw. When teeth are missing, the result is often a reduction in jaw definition, which only bone grafts can heal.

Critical bone lost in the jaw too

In the first year of tooth loss alone, the jaw experiences a 25% reduction.

This can lead to a significantly weaker profile and a more ‘aged’ appearance.

As the jawbone begins to contract, gum tissue starts to shrink as well, becoming increasingly vulnerable and eventually developing sore spots.

With the increase of space in the mouth, the tongue can also enlarge, creating further complications within the mouth.

Missing teeth are associated with poor general health and oral hygiene problems

Tooth loss can have significant consequences for a person’s general health.

The main cause, and perhaps the most obvious, is the loss of chewing ability, with a study of denture wearers showing that nearly half exhibited a lower ability to chew correctly.

Chewing has been linked to better general health, including less reliance on medication and a better diet.

Equally, studies indicate a strong correlation between good dental hygiene and reduced risk of heart and blood vessel disease.

Another impact of tooth loss, and one that is often overlooked, is the impact on mental health.

Tooth loss can be embarrassing for many, resulting in a loss of overall confidence.

One might begin avoiding certain situations such as kissing and eating in public or even avoid smiling altogether.

Any one of these can be deeply damaging to a person’s well being, and only compound the physical effects of tooth loss.

Single Implants

Often used in simple cases where one tooth has been lost by accident or trauma. More.

Multiple Implants

Used in cases of multiple tooth loss in different locations in the mouth, where teeth are not missing in a row. More.


Perfect for full mouth reconstructions, where patients have experienced tooth loss on the upper and lower jaws. More.


When securing implants to the jawbone is not possible, zygomatic implants are used to attach to the bone in the cheekbone. More.
"Exemplary dentistry. I am completely delighted with my newly perfect smile! I’ve had implants, crowns, extractions all completed in a pain free, professional way. Lovely team, state of the art technology and equipment, Covid secure. I will be recommending to everyone! Ali is simply superb and I highly recommend."
Nickie W.
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