All You Need to Know About Dental Bridges – Types, Uses, and Aftercare
What Are Dental Bridges?
They are oral devices in restorative dentistry that restore missing teeth. The standard dental bridges feature two dental crowns and an artificial replacement tooth called a pontic. Such a model makes dental bridges in Bradford perfect for replacing single missing teeth. The reason is that dental bridges rely on adjacent teeth to support the artificial replacement tooth. It means that without adjacent teeth you may not be a suitable candidate for dental bridges near you. However, as your dentist in Bradford will tell you, oral bridgework can replace up to three missing teeth in a row.
Regarding the aesthetics of your smile after treatment, do not be too concerned. Ideally, artificial teeth and dental crowns commonly feature porcelain over other dental materials. Since porcelain is tooth-colored, you can pick a shade of white that closest matches the color of your natural teeth.
Types of Dental Bridges
At South Simcoe Dental Care, we employ different models of dental bridges so that there are options to match patients’ needs and preferences. The types of oral bridges in dentistry are:
- Traditional dental bridges – are the most common type. They feature two dental crowns and a replacement tooth. These bridges are very sturdy because they obtain support from both sides of the missing tooth. It makes them perfect for replacing the back teeth, that is, molars and premolars.
- Cantilever bridges – are a little different from traditional bridges in that they entail only one dental crown. The dental crown supports one artificial tooth. This type of dental bridge is favorable to patients who do not wish to have both their adjacent teeth prepared only to replace one missing tooth. However, with support on only one side, cantilever bridges are not as sturdy or stable as traditional dental bridges.
- Maryland-bonded dental bridges – they are a lot similar to traditional bridges in the sense that they require support from two adjacent teeth. However, instead of dental crowns, Maryland-bonded bridges rely on porcelain or metal frameworks that attach to the backside of teeth. It means that your dentist will not need to trim the enamels of adjacent teeth to make room for dental crowns. This feature makes Maryland-bonded bridges perfect for restoring the front teeth. The downside of these bridges is that when a metal framework is in use, it can wear down the adjacent teeth over time. Besides, Maryland-bonded bridges cannot compare in strength with traditional dental bridges.
- Implant-supported dental bridges – are bridges that require reinforcement from dental implants, which are small metal posts erected in the jawbone to replace the roots of teeth. If you have multiple missing teeth in a row, it means that you do not have sufficient adjacent teeth to support the bridgework. In that case, dental implants can act as adjacent teeth. You would require surgery to place the dental implants, which is a struggle for conservative patients. The good news is that implant-supported bridges offer a permanent solution to tooth loss.
When Should You Get Dental Bridges?
Dental bridges are primarily for replacing missing teeth. However, given that there are other alternatives in restorative dentistry for replacing teeth, dental bridges only work for a few missing teeth. Any more than three missing teeth in a row would not be suitable for dental bridges. Instead, you need to get partial dentures or rely on dental implants to support the bridgework.
Aftercare Measures for Dental Bridges
One requirement for all dental restorations in dentistry is proper maintenance after the treatment. Handle your artificial teeth the same way you do your natural teeth. It is the only way to ensure that you do not harbor bacteria in your mouth, risking various infections. Some of the tips for caring for your dental bridges after your treatment are:
- Brush your teeth regularly – you cannot allow room for plaque to form on your teeth. Dental bridges are susceptible to decay, especially along the edges near the gum line.
- Watch what you eat – hard foods can break, crack or loosen your dental bridge. Avoid sticky and chewy foods.
- Do not forget to floss your teeth daily.