Have you lost a tooth and looking to bridge the gap? In today’s article, we plan to shed some light on the dental bridge, explain the different types of bridges available and reveal 3 of the fantastic benefits bridges can have for your smile.
What Are Dental Bridges?
As the name implies, dental bridges fill the gap between two healthy teeth after one has been lost or removed.
Bridging this gap aids in the performance of daily mouth functions such as eating, speaking and drinking while at the same time maintaining the look and integrity of your jaw.
For some people, teeth bridges can be a more convenient alternative to dentures and, depending on the type of bridge needed, a less invasive option than dental implants.
Let’s look now at 4 of the different types of bridges your dentist may prescribe.
4 Different Types of Dental Bridges
1. Traditional Dental Bridges
Traditional bridges involve cementing dental crowns, known as abutments, over the adjacent healthy teeth, with a pontic (fake tooth) attached in the middle filling the gap left by the missing tooth.
In this method, the healthy teeth will need to be filed down to provide room and a better fit for the attached crowns.
2. Cantilever Dental Bridges
Cantilevers Bridges are similar to Traditional Porcelain Bridges; however, this option only involves a single abutment covering a single adjacent tooth (seen above), which is less than traditional bridges.
3. Maryland Dental Bridges
Maryland Bridges differ from traditional Cantilever Bridges in that no crowns are used to fit the bridge in place.
Instead, the bridge is secured by a metal or porcelain framework attached to the back of the adjacent healthy teeth.
Unlike Traditional and Cantilever methods, there is no need to file down healthy teeth to make room for crowns in this situation.
4. Implant Supported Bridges
In cases where there are multiple missing teeth, your dentist may prescribe the use of an implant-supported bridge.
Instead of crowns, dental implants support the bridge in place, usually one implant per missing tooth.
In situations where the use of dental implants for every missing tooth isn’t possible, Pontics (fake teeth) may be suspended between implants to help bridge the gap (seen above).
3 Amazing Benefits of Dental Bridges
1. Restore Everyday Mouth Function
Firstly, dental bridges are an effective way to regain both your mouth’s aesthetic and practical function.
Once the gap from the missing tooth has been filled, the dental bridge will act like your original teeth, aiding in chewing and breaking down food and reducing speech issues caused by missing teeth.
2. Maintaining the Natural Shape of Your Face
When gaps left by missing teeth go untreated, the surrounding healthy teeth are at risk of shifting and spreading out.
Failing to fill these gaps can also place you at risk of bone loss in the jaw, causing significant issues for both look of your face and the function of your mouth in the future.
Unlike dentures, bridges don’t need to be removed every night. Therefore, it reduces the risk of loss or damage and eliminates the need for time-consuming nightly rituals.
However, while your dental bridge is an artificial replacement, it doesn’t let you maintain oral hygiene.
Regular visits to your dentist and diligent dental care will go a long way in ensuring you get what you pay for and that your implants last for many years to come.
For more information about whether a dental bridge is a proper solution for you, please book an appointment at one of our 6 locations across Queensland.