A single tooth implant takes the place of your tooth root and acts like a natural tooth. A single implant can also be easier to keep clean than a bridge and it is less likely that your gums will recede with an implant.
If you are missing multiple teeth on one side of your mouth, multiple dental implants can be placed in a row. These implants can support multiple individual crowns, either tied together to support a bridge or used to support dentures.
Once the implants are in place, they can be used in many ways. If the type of restoration changes down the road, the existing implants can be used as support for the new restoration. Because an implant fuses with the bone, the bone will stay intact and not deteriorate as it would under bridgework or dentures.
If your teeth have been missing for a long period, some additional procedures may be necessary before implants are placed, such as bone grafting, because of damage and deterioration that naturally occurs when the support of the teeth has been removed.