- by Dr. Karanjit Dhillon
- October 14, 2022
A false tooth or teeth typically made of crowns that are held in place by the abutment teeth on either side of the gap and are used as a fixed restoration to replace one or more missing teeth is called a dental bridge.
Dental Bridges Imitate the look, shape, and role of natural teeth, and are custom-made for every patient.
They are usually made from porcelain as it allows their aesthetic to blend with natural teeth. Healthy teeth on either side of the missing teeth are a prerequisite for getting a dental bridge.
Parts of a Dental Bridge
Dental Bridge normally consists of:
- Abutment teeth: Some parts of the abutment teeth are removed by the dentist before the placement. The abutments are the anchoring or supporting teeth and can be natural teeth or even dental implants and they provide support on each side of the bridge.
- Pontics: These are the false teeth that fill in the space and attach to the crowns. Usually made of porcelain & attached to a metal structure for support, dental bridges may be made of all-ceramic or a combination of porcelain & other materials.
Advantages of Dental Bridges
There can be many reasons for tooth loss:
A dental bridge may be recommended by the dentist for patients who already have dental crowns on the supporting teeth, but cannot get implants due to any reason, medical or otherwise. The dental bridge can help in many ways.
Everyone is aware of the fact that a missing tooth or teeth can affect normal life in many ways.
A dental bridge helps in putting back the smile on your face, restoring the ability to chew properly and speak clearly. It also aids in giving your face a lift and maintaining its shape.
Dental bridges adjust the bite to correctly disseminate the force when chewing and also prevent the teeth that remain from moving out of the right position.
Moreover, Dental Bridge placement is a relatively quick procedure that doesn’t need any invasive surgery, except in the case of implant-supported bridges.
It not only has a faster recovery period but also is a more cost-friendly option.
Types of Dental Bridges
The four types of Dental Bridges include:
These are the most common types of dental bridges, which are made of ceramic, porcelain fused to metal, or all-metal-like gold.
Consisting of one fake tooth, which is called a pontic, a dental crown is cemented into each of the abutment teeth, holding the bridge in place on each side. Proper care can make them last a long time.
It is very similar to the traditional bridge, a dental crown cemented to just one abutment secures the pontic in the cantilever dental bridge.
Cantilever Bridges are normally used to restore front teeth as they are not sturdy enough to support molars.
Used to restore premolars and molars, implant-supported bridges are the strongest and most stable option. An implant is surgically placed for every missing tooth, to hold the bridge.
The process generally requires a couple of two surgeries, one to put the implants in the jawbone and another one to put the bridge.
Maryland bridges are relatively less invasive than traditional bridges and are known as adhesive bridges.
Maryland dental bridges utilize one natural abutment tooth, on each side of the gap just like a traditional bridge.
Mainly used to restore incisors and very rarely also used to restore missing molars or canines, Maryland bridges use a framework of metal or porcelain which is attached to the backsides of the abutment teeth thus lesser tooth removal is necessary for them as compared to traditional bridges which use dental crowns on the abutment teeth.
Taking Care Of Your Dental Bridge
When asked if the dental bridges require any special care, they explain that the success of the dental bridge is largely dependent on the resilience of the remaining teeth.
You should be especially careful to prevent tooth decay and gum disease to avert any chances of tooth loss.
The protection and longevity of the dental bridge can be ensured by following the below-mentioned instructions:
- Brushing at least twice a day and flossing daily, especially under the bridge can go a long way in keeping your bridges safe. A robust oral hygiene routine and some extra techniques are important after the placement of a permanent bridge. Use an antibacterial mouthwash to rinse often.
- Regular professional cleanings by our experienced dental experts at Morgan Hill Dentistry can help to detect potential problems in time, improving the rate of success of the treatment.
- Make sure to inculcate plenty of fruits, vegetables, and fiber into your diet. Limit the consumption of chewy, fibrous foods & sticky foods like some meats, gum, and candy, and also hard foods like nuts, chips, Ice cubes, etc
Is the Procedure of Dental Bridges Painful?
Though Maryland and cantilever bridges are relatively painless procedures, a few people may still experience gum swelling or tenderness.
However, this can be easily relieved with over-the-counter pain medications like ibuprofen.
What Does a Dental Bridge Cost?
The cost of dental bridges is dependent on many factors the type chosen, the number of teeth needed to fill the gap, the materials used, type of the bridge selected, and the complication involved.
Additional treatments, if required for other dental issues, such as gum disease can increase the cost too.
Are Dental Bridges Covered by Insurance?
Insurance can cover up to 50% of the cost of dental bridges.
A dental bridge can help to restore the look and function of your mouth, improving not only your speech and smile but also allowing you to eat your favorite foods.