A dental implant can be used to replace a single missing tooth in any area of the mouth whether it is a front tooth or a back tooth as long as there is an adequate amount of bone. (This adequate amount of bone will be discussed in some detail under a Diagnosis and Treatment Planning Section).
Congenitally Missing Lateral Incisors
Congenitally missing lateral incisors is a unique condition that we discuss under the category of Single Missing Teeth. Anywhere from 3% to 9% of the population is born with some adult teeth that are missing. In this population, the most common adult tooth to be congenitally missing is the Maxillary (upper) Lateral Incisor or Incisors. The lateral incisors are the teeth to the right and left of the patient's middle teeth.
The most functional, cosmetic and long lasting procedure for replacing congenitally missing lateral incisors is with dental implants. All other procedures such as partial dentures, Maryland Bridges and cantilevered bridges from the adjacent cuspid teeth present many long-range complications.
The replacement of congenitally missing lateral incisors often requires a Team Approach between the orthodontist, family dentist and implant surgeon.