When it comes to tooth loss, few things are quite as embarrassing and troublesome as missing several teeth in a row. Doing so creates a gap between the missing teeth, and this can be both quite noticeable as well as quite annoying when it comes to trying to eat or drink. Sometimes these gaps can even affect how you speak. It is no surprise, then, that one of the most common procedures we do involves creating a bridge for our patients in order to close these irksome gaps. In general, there are three different types of dental bridges. See them explained in more detail below.
Different Types of Dental BridgesAs mentioned above, there are three different kinds of dental bridges. The type of bridge that we will ultimately select largely depends upon where your gap is as well as the kind of material from which you want your bridge created.
Traditional bridges are the most commonly used kind of bridge, and are created from ceramics or even porcelain that has been fused to metal. A traditional bridge creates a crown for each implant or tooth that resides on either side of the missing tooth, or teeth, in question. A pontic is then placed in between these crowns.
The second kind of bridge is the cantilever bridge. This kind of bridge is used when adjacent teeth only exist on one side of the missing teeth in question. It is worth noting that this kind of bridge is rarely used today and is not normally used in the back of your mouth, as it can exert too much pressure on the surrounding teeth and ultimately damage them.
The third kind of bridge is the Maryland bonded bridge. This is also sometimes known as a Maryland bridge or a resin-bonded bridge. These bridges are made up of either porcelain (either alone or fused to metal) or plastic gums and teeth that are built over a porcelain or metal framework. This kind of bridge often has porcelain or metal “wings” on one side of the bridge which are then bonded to your natural teeth surrounding the gap.
Advantages of Dental BridgesThere are a number of reasons why dental bridges are so widely used. First of all, a bridge is a good and relatively non-invasive way to restore your healthy, full smile. This alone can be worth the cost and time. Bridges also help restore your ability to speak and chew properly, and serve to better distribute the pressure of your bite as they replace the missing teeth in question. Finally, bridges work to keep your existing teeth in place. If there is no bridge, your teeth could likely drift out of position and cause more problems.
The installation process for a dental bridge is normally around two visits to prepare the surrounding teeth and create the bridge itself. You might have to come back in a few times after that just to make sure that the bridge is fitting correctly. If you’re interested in learning more about the dental bridge installation process, contact us at (360) 447-6355 today!