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    Thread: Should I get a bridge or Implant for 1st Molar?

    1. #1
      Join Date
      Dec 2009

      Default Should I get a bridge or Implant for 1st Molar?

      On Friday I had my upper right 1st Molar extracted. The tooth had been root canaled & crowned about 10 years ago & a couple of months ago the crown fell off & I took it to the dentist, he Xrayed it & said the tooth had decay inside all the way down to the tri-roots & had to come out no doubt, I think the tooth was cracked also.

      Now I have a huge hole where the tooth was & am scratching my head as to how I am going to chew without a first Molar & my left side teeth are getting sore.

      What is my best solution here? Implant, Bridge or removable Partial? I read that implants don't work so great on major upper molars. The dentist just extracted the tooth & did no preparations for replacement. Any advice here, I am not sure what to do because I don't want to wait like 4-6 months for a implant pin to heal into the bone, how do you eat till then? Would a bridge be a quicker option? What kind of bridge, Fixed or Maryland? What does a bridge cost?

      Any input would be appreciated. (Cost is an factor here also)

    2. #2
      Join Date
      Nov 2005

      Default Re: Should I get a bridge or Implant for 1st Molar?

      The best long term option would be an implant, however also the most expensive. An immediate partial denture- or possibly bidge could be fashioned while the implant heals if suitable.
      A bridge may be an option, but for a molar would really need to be 'fixed' rather than a maryland (wich would fail fairly quickly in this region). A fixed bridge would require the preparation of one or both of the adjacent teeth- so isn't ideal unless these teeth are heavily restored anyway. It wouldn't be an ideal option to prepare a 'virgin' tooth for a bridge. Bridges vary in price depending on the material used and the number of 'units'- eg 3 units would be the missing tooth (the pontic) and both adjacent teeth (the abutments) in front and behind the gap. Often a 3 unit bridge will be about half to 3/4 of the costs that the implant would have been.
      A removeable partial plate could easily fill the gap and would be inexpensive, however most people would rather tolerate the gap than the plate!
      I hope this helps
      Dr Mike
      Dr Mike Gow BDS (Gla) MFDS RCPS (Gla) MSc Hyp (Lon) PGCert (Edin)
      The Berkeley Clinic, Glasgow

    3. #3
      Join Date
      Dec 2009

      Default Re: Should I get a bridge or Implant for 1st Molar?

      Thanks Dr. Mike:

      What about something called a flipper or something called a Nesbit RPD, how well do those work? I am almost 49 years old & have 2 kids in college right now, one freshman & one junior, so I am completely tapped out of money & I don't think the bank will loan me anymore money. What is the chance of me getting along for a couple of years with this missing tooth? Once the Junior graduates that might free up some money for an implant. What will my success be chewing with the missing molar side of my mouth? Do i use the molar #2 & Molar #4 to do most of the chewing? Molar #4 has been root canaled & crowned so I think it might be OK for chewing, is it OK to chew on a Premolar like #4? The other problem I have is that Molar #2 is a large Molar but has a kind of a "W" shape with one of the points of the W hitting the molar underneath it, will that damage the lower Molar? Can a dentist blunt or change the shape of the #4 Molar?

    4. #4
      Join Date
      Aug 2012

      Default Re: Should I get a bridge or Implant for 1st Molar?

      i've been getting along without my first upper right molar for just over 3 years now. no issue at all eating, and i am also missing the first pre-molar on that same upper side, as well as the first molar on the bottom right. my right is my 'chewing side' due to 5 teeth missing on the left side of my mouth, molars 1,2,3 on the top and molars 2,3 on the bottom. molar 1 on the bottom is most likely due for extraction in the not too distant future, as there is an ancient (from elementary school times, and i'm 31 now) amalgam filling there, just waiting to fall out due to decay underneath.

      like you, i would LOVE to have implants for my missing teeth, but finances just will not allow it for a long long time. around here, implants start at $4000 per tooth, YIKES!

      my dentist recommended a partial removable denture for both sides of my mouth, but even the cast ones (what dentist noted on my treatment plan, with the huge gross metal attachment 'chunks' and clasps) are above my budget and honestly, i will never have any more metal in my mouth after that amalgam covered tooth comes out. i hate having metal in my mouth to the point where i prefer using plastic forks and spoons!

      from what i've read about implants and healing, they put on a 'healing cap' during the time that the titanium rod/screw is fusing to the bone. far as i have gathered, this doesn't hamper eating at all.

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