With dental implants, you can replace just a single tooth, multiple adjacent teeth, or even a full upper or lower jaw of teeth. You don't need a separate implant for each individual tooth, however. Here's how it works.
How are different numbers of missing teeth replaced by dental implants?
If you're missing one or two individual teeth, each can be replaced by an individual implant, abutment, and crown. This is the case whether or not the teeth are next to each other or not.
Three or four missing teeth in a row can be replaced with two implants, two abutments, and three or four artificial teeth (respectively) in the form of a three- or four-unit bridge that is attached to the abutment.
6-7 missing teeth in a row can be replaced with 3 implants, 8-10 missing teeth with 4-5 implants, and 9-10 missing teeth with 4-6 implants. To replace all 14 teeth in the upper or lower jaw, no more than 8 implants are usually necessary.
Keep in mind that the above numbers are just guidelines; the number of implants you ultimately receive also depends on the volume of bone in your jaw, and the size and position of your teeth.
People with small jaw bones and individuals who have experienced bone loss as a result of having missing teeth for a longer period of time may require a bone graft procedure in order to place the required number of implants effectively.