A dental bridge is typically made from either metal alloys, porcelain or a combination of both materials, and it can be permanently anchored in place by being cemented to the adjacent natural teeth.
A dental bridge not only restores chewing and speaking ability but also maintains the shape of one’s face and prevents existing teeth from drifting out of position. Several types of bridges are available; each type requires specific preparation before placement.
Placing a bridge involves multiple visits, which take up to two weeks to complete. Once placed, proper care must be taken for a dental bridge to last many years without needing replacement.
What is a Dental Bridge?
Metaphorically speaking, a bridge connects two otherwise disparate landmasses, providing a pathway for movement and exchange. In the same way, a dental bridge links two or more teeth together to allow for proper function and form.
A dental bridge typically consists of one or more artificial teeth, called pontics, held in place by dental crowns on either side of the gap created by missing teeth. Dental cement is used to secure the crowns and pontic into place.
Depending on the type of dental bridge chosen, other materials, such as porcelain, may be used instead of metal to provide an aesthetically pleasing solution. Bridges can be made from several different types, depending on the needs of each patient and their oral hygiene plan; some bridges are removable, while others are permanent fixtures.
The procedure for placing a dental bridge is relatively straightforward. Still, it should only be done by experienced dentists who know all types of bridges available and how they will impact your dental care needs.
The cost of a dental bridge varies widely depending on location, type of material used and even insurance coverage; it’s essential that patients research their options before deciding what kind of bridge is best for them financially.
Transitioning now to discussing the numerous benefits of having a properly placed dental bridge – this includes improved jaw support structure and restoring aesthetics and functionality when smiling or eating food normally again.
Benefits of Dental Bridges
Restoring a missing tooth with a dental bridge offers numerous advantages to the patient. Bridges can be permanent or removable, typically made up of two abutment teeth holding the false tooth in place. They also provide support for adjacent teeth and protect them from tooth decay.
While dental implants have become increasingly popular as an alternative to bridges, many patients may not be eligible for this type of procedure due to medical or financial reasons. Therefore, bridges remain a viable option for replacing missing teeth. Bridges come in various kinds, including cantilever bridges and traditional fixed-bridge designs.
Traditional fixed bridges involve crowns on either side of the gap attached to the replacement tooth using a porcelain framework. Cantilever bridges are most commonly used when only one abutment tooth is available for support and require less preparation than traditional fixed bridges.
Furthermore, although dental insurance may not cover implant-supported dental bridges, it often covers other types of bridgework and associated expenses, such as crowns and X-rays.
Types of Dental Bridges
Restorative dentistry offers various approaches to replacing missing teeth, including cantilever and fixed-bridge designs.
Temporary, traditional, resin-bonded, and porcelain wings are the most commonly used bridges.
A temporary bridge is a custom-made one placed in position while the permanent replacement is manufactured.
Traditional bridges are typically made of porcelain fused with metal which can match the colour of your natural teeth.
Resin-bonded bridges are also known as Maryland bonded bridges and consist of plastic teeth and gums held in place by a metal framework or wings on either side for support.
Porcelain wings are more aesthetically pleasing than traditional or resin-bonded bridges because they closely resemble natural teeth.
Single-tooth dental bridges involve creating a crown for the tooth on either side of the missing tooth, with an artificial tooth filling the gap between them.
Tooth-supported bridges are similar to single-tooth dental bridges but use anchor teeth instead of crowns for support instead of adjacent teeth or gums.
Cantilever dental bridge involves placing an artificial tooth supported by only one abutment tooth instead of two like conventional bridges do.
All types of dental bridges offer several advantages such as improved appearance, better speech, better chewing ability, preventing other oral health problems from occurring due to lost teeth etc., thus making them an ideal choice for restoring your smile and mouth functionality after losing a permanent adult tooth.
With this information about the types of dental bridges now available, we can discuss preparation for a dental bridge procedure.
Preparation for a Dental Bridge
Before undergoing a bridge procedure, it is essential to understand the preparation involved.
A bridge bond will need to be formed between the patient’s teeth and the dental laboratory; thus, choosing the right style and type of bridge is key. The patient may select from fixed bridges that involve metal or porcelain fused to metal materials, cantilever bridges that are only supported on one side, resin-bonded bridges with wires and brackets attached to existing teeth or dental implants that can also be used for support.
A dentist must assess the condition of all teeth to establish if they are healthy enough for permanent bridge placement. If not, any necessary treatments must be completed before placing a dental bridge, such as filing down some teeth or performing root canals.
Finally, impressions of the mouth will have to be taken to create an exact model of the mouth so that the laboratory can craft a customized dental bridge according to its design specifications.
The Process of Placing a Dental Bridge
Once a dentist has assessed the condition of the teeth and necessary preparations have been made, a customized bridge can be placed to restore the patient’s smile.
The placement of a dental bridge begins with the attachment of crowns to the natural abutment teeth located on either side of the gap—this type is known as a cantilever dental bridge.
During this process, your dentist will make an impression to create a mould that will fit perfectly over your teeth.
The next step is attaching artificial teeth and resin-retained bridges between crowns using permanent cement.
Then, temporary cement will be used to secure them while waiting for the permanent bridge to be ready.
For those who opt for implant abutments, additional steps may be needed before placing their new tooth or teeth in position with permanent cement.
Finally, after all components are fitted together correctly, you should have fully restored functionality and aesthetics from your dental bridge treatment.
Proper care and maintenance should provide years of durability and satisfaction.
Caring for a Dental Bridge
Proper care and maintenance are essential for a dental bridge to ensure the longevity of the restorative appliance.
This appliance can provide a permanent solution for replacing missing teeth, and it requires regular visits to the healthcare provider to maintain good oral health.
The patient should visit their dentist for dental cleanings every six months to ensure that the bridge is properly fitted into place and maintain an appropriate face shape.
Patients should also avoid fibrous foods that could dislodge or damage the bridge.
Proper brushing and flossing techniques should be used regularly so food does not become stuck between teeth, causing plaque buildup and decay.
Additionally, patients should alert their healthcare provider if they begin experiencing discomfort related to the dental bridge during their regular visits.
Following these steps, patients can preserve their dental bridges and maintain their health.
Dental bridges are an excellent way to replace missing teeth. They can provide a natural-looking smile and help to restore full chewing function. Bridges also prevent the remaining teeth from drifting out of position and affecting proper bite alignment.
Dental bridges can last 10-15 years or longer with proper care. Placing a dental bridge requires careful planning, preparation, and skilled execution by a qualified dentist or prosthodontist. The process is relatively straightforward but requires attention to detail to ensure a successful, natural outcome.
Proper home hygiene practices are essential to maintain the bridge’s longevity, allowing it to “stand the test of time” like an anchor that holds everything together.
If you’re looking for a reliable and experienced dentist in Aspendale to help restore your smile with a dental bridge, come to Aspendale Gardens Dental Care, located at Aspendale Gardens, VIC, Australia. Please book a consultation today, and let us help you get the perfect smile you deserve.