You've lost a tooth, and you have two options to replace it: obtaining a single-tooth dental implant or having a bridge installed. Which one is better? Here is a look at a few things to help you decide which is better for you. 

A bridge is going to give you less biting power than an implant. 

The bite power that a bridge provides is actually provided by the surrounding teeth. A dental implant relies on its own anchoring system for support, which means it provides its own biting force. Therefore, implants tend to give you more bite force, which can be super important in some parts of the mouth. 

An implant will last longer than a bridge most of the time. 

Implants have the potential to last a lifetime if you take care of them and your oral health. Bridges tend to have to be replaced periodically. You probably will never have to have an implant replaced. 

Dental implants require surgical placement but bridges do not. 

One thing to keep in mind about obtaining an implant is that it will require surgery. Bridges will not require surgery to be installed in your mouth. For people who prefer to not undergo surgery, bridges can seem like the better option. 

The dental implant is not going to be affected if you lose your other teeth. 

If you have a bridge and the supporting teeth get loose or deteriorate over time, the bridge is at risk of coming out. If you have a single implant placed, it will still be there even if the surrounding teeth fall out.

Not everyone is a good candidate for implants. 

If you are a smoker, have diabetes, or have gum disease, obtaining a dental implant may not be possible. Your mouth needs to be rather healthy for the implant to be successful. You can usually get a bridge regardless of whether you have diabetes, smoke, or have gum disease. 

You can get an implant even if the surrounding teeth are not in good shape. 

Bridges rely on the strength of the surrounding teeth for support. Therefore, if there are problems with the teeth surrounding the area where you have lost a tooth, you may not have a good support system where a bridge can logically be installed. On the other hand, a dental implant is anchored into the bone, so the health of the surrounding teeth is not such an important factor.