General Dentist vs. Prosthodontist for a Dental Bridge

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General Dentist vs. Prosthodontist for a Dental Bridge

Dental bridges can replace one or more missing teeth if they have been lost due to tooth decay, gum disease, trauma, or more. If you require a dental bridge, should you visit a dentist or prosthodontist for a dental bridge? Thanks to advancements in dentistry, most general dentists and prosthodontists can create prosthetics (including dental bridges) that blend in seamlessly with the rest of the smile. While both types of dentists can help you add volume to your smile with a dental bridge, here are three advantages of selecting a general dentist rather than a prosthodontist:

Cut Expenses

On average, general dentists can produce dental bridges more affordably Typically, prosthodontists charge a few hundred dollars more for a dental bridge with the same quality materials. Generally speaking, patients can expect to pay

  • 3-unit traditional bridge: $1,500 to $6,000
  • 4-unit traditional bridge: $2,000-$12,000
  • Two to six dental implants: $3,500 to $30,000

If your dental bridge is deemed necessary for your health, then insurance might cover up to 50% of the total cost of the procedure. Consult with your insurance company for more information about your dental bridge coverage.

Similar Education and Training

At a minimum, all American dentists must obtain: 

  • A bachelor’s degree in a related field
  • A doctorate’s degree in dentistry
  • Passing scores on their certification exams

Beyond foundational dentistry requirements, prosthodontists must also complete three years of additional training to become a specialist in creating prosthetic dental appliances. After graduation, all dentists must complete continuing education courses to be proficient and skilled with state-of-the-art dental procedures and technology. In regulation with the Georgia Dental Association (GDA), Georgia dentists must complete 40 hours of continuing education every two years.

Although both types of dentists have similar backgrounds in education, prosthodontists are limited in their services. They focus solely on their specialty, which is providing patients with prosthetic appliances and dental implants. On the contrary, dentists typically offer various services, including cosmetic, general, preventive, and restorative dental services.

Established Relationship Between Dentist and Patient

Broadly speaking, a general dentist is the most visited doctor. If you currently have a general dentist that you see at least twice a year, you probably have an established bond with them. 

For some, the dentist’s office can be a scary place, especially if it’s in a new, unfamiliar setting. When patients stick with their familiar general dentist instead of a prosthodontist, they can experience the planning, procedure, and maintenance stages in the familiar office instead of going to multiple clinics for different steps of the process. Also, it can be more convenient to visit the same dentist instead of choosing a new one.

Moreover, a general dentist can monitor every step of your dental bridge process:

  • Before creating your dental bridge, your general dentist can recommend alternatives to replace your teeth to find the most suitable solution for your budget and goals. Also, if you have health deficiencies (such as periodontal disease or inadequate bone volume), your dentist can provide preliminary procedures to restore oral wellness.
  • After bridge placement, your dentist can observe your oral health long-term. If a challenge arises, he or she can actively take the required action to conserve your teeth, gums, supporting bone, and dental bridge.

Schedule a Dental Bridge Consultation

At her Atlanta office, Dr. Abbey J. Lee helps existing, and new patients fill in the gaps in their smiles with dental bridges. To schedule a consultation with us, call 404-328-7177 or message us online today.

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