Unless it is Halloween and someone is dressed-up as a jack-o-lantern, missing teeth should be replaced to maintain chewing ability, aesthetics and dental health. Teeth are lost for various reasons, but there are also a variety of ways to replace them. Tooth replacement requires dental knowledge, as it is complex and detailed. Dental implants, bridges, partial dentures and acrylic stayplates or "flippers" are the most common treatments for a single missing tooth.
Schedule an appointment with your regular dentist. If you do not have a regular dentist, 1800dentist.com or the American Dental Association (ada.org) can assist in locating a reputable, local dentist.
Attend the dental appointment that was scheduled. If the dentist is not the one who removed the tooth, allow x-rays to be taken by the dental assistant, under the direction of the dentist.
Submit to an oral examination by the dentist, this allows him to best determine the course of treatment that can be offered to replace the tooth.
Discuss the treatment options with the dentist. The optimum treatment the dentist will recommend for a missing tooth is a dental implant with a porcelain crown. This involves a metal screw implanted into the bone where the missing tooth was. After healing occurs, a crown goes on the peg.
The next best remedy would be a porcelain fused to a metal bridge. This can be done a couple of ways: A Maryland bridge is just a ceramic tooth with metal wings on it that bond to the teeth on either side. A conventional bridge involves reduction of the teeth on either side of the missing tooth and crowns made with a false tooth fused between them. All bridges are permanently cemented.
The following consideration would be a partial denture made with a clasping chrome framework holding an artificial tooth replacing the missing one.
The last treatment option would probably be an acrylic stayplate or "flipper" that fits in the mouth behind the teeth like a partial denture. It is all acrylic without framework and usually without clasps, holding an artificial tooth to replace the missing tooth. A stayplate is merely cosmetic and not considered permanent treatment.
Choose the preferred treatment and schedule the appointments with the dental office to have the missing tooth replaced.