Tag Archives: missing teeth

Invisalign and Missing Teeth

If I have a missing tooth and want to replace it, but have a crooked tooth too, how do I fix that? I was thinking of replacing the lost tooth with a dental implant and straightening my teeth with Invisalign. If so, would I do Invisalign before or after? If I have to do it after does Invisalign work with missing teeth or do I replace my teeth with something else?


Dear Theodora,

Invisalign aligner

You have picked two wonderful procedures. Nice work! Dental implants will be a great tooth replacement and Invisalign has one of the highest patient satisfaction rates of any dental procedure.

Between the two, you will want to straighten the teeth before replacing the tooth.

Invisalign does a great job of working around missing teeth. It uses a sophisticated software program to design the ideal treatment plan for you.

Aside from being comfortable, allowing you to straighten your teeth invisibly, and working in a fraction of the time of traditional braces, the aligners can also double as teeth whitening trays. This means you can straighten and whiten your teeth at the same time, giving you a mini smile makeover at a fraction of the cost.

Then, once all your teeth are in place it will be time to get your dental implant. You will want to go to a dentist who has post-doctoral training in placing dental implants. It is not something taught in dental school.

When you are done, you will have a beautiful straight smile.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Dentists Drs. Foreman and Thimmesch.

Can I Trust Comfort Dental?

A little over a year ago, I had a bridge put across my upper front using the canine teeth as anchors. Since then, the canine teeth have come loose and now they need to be replaced. Comfort Dental did the bridge so I went back to them for advice. They’ve suggested a partial denture. I did try that and it is massively uncomfortable so I went to another dentist for a second opinion. They suggested I get three full-sized dental implants. One on either side and another in the front between them. Then he’d attach a bridge to it. This plan was very expensive so I went back to Comfort Dental. They’re suggesting we replace all my upper teeth with mini implants which would cost less. I like the idea of the lower cost, but my experiences with Comfort Dental have not provided me any long term solutions and I’m wondering at this point if I should trust them. Do you have an opinion on which plan is better for me in the long run?


Dear Maggie,

You have been through a lot with these teeth. I’m going to explain a bit about Comfort Dental which should help you understand the way they work. They are a corporate dental clinic with (at last count) about 150 locations. Consider them mass-market dentistry. They tend to be less expensive, which is attractive to many patients.

Often, their practitioners are just out of dental school and are there to get experience before they open a private practice. They won’t understand principles dentists who have been in their field for some time have picked up over the years. One of those, in your case, seems to be some basic engineering principles, which is an important part of dentistry.

You mentioned having a dental bridge on your upper teeth where they used the canine teeth as the anchor teeth, dentists would call these abutment teeth. There are twisting forces at play here and this type of placement will actually cause your canine teeth to come loose, as they did.

This is the reason the dentist you went to for a second opinion suggested that you have a third dental implant placed in the center. This is to prevent those twisting forces. It will keep the implants secure.

While Comfort Dental’s plan will be less expensive, mini implants are not strong enough to anchor dental crowns. They are mostly used to help keep a denture from falling out, but there will still be some movement. Like your other treatments from them, I wouldn’t expect this to last very long.

My suggestion is to go with the other dentist’s suggestion. Sometimes, the inexpensive treatment becomes the least affordable one because it doesn’t last and you have to keep adding treatments or there are complications.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Dentists Drs. Thimmesch and Foreman.