Having a missing tooth can affect your confidence and may even interfere with the way you eat or talk. Fortunately, you can resolve these problems by getting a dental bridge.
As its name suggests, it bridges the gap between one or more missing teeth through the addition of false teeth (pontics). This ultimately helps restore lost teeth and consequently, your confident smile.
But before getting this treatment, you should know that there are different types of dental bridges used for specific purposes. Read on to learn more!
5 Types of Dental Bridges and Their Purpose
1. Traditional Dental Bridge
A traditional bridge is the most common type of dental bridge used for restoring lost teeth. It consists of a false tooth or teeth that are held in place by dental crowns. These dental crowns are cemented onto each of the abutment teeth.
As such, a traditional bridge is used when you still have remaining natural teeth on both sides of the missing tooth.
The false (pontic) tooth or teeth are usually small, lightweight and made of porcelain. This material can last a long time, especially with proper oral hygiene. In addition, the teeth also provide excellent chewing comfort.
However, this type of dental bridge will remove enough enamel from your abutment (natural) teeth to make room for the crowns and false teeth. Since enamel cannot be restored, you need to properly take care of your abutment teeth to ensure the bridges stay in place for a long time.
2. Composite Dental Bridge
Similar to traditional bridges, composite dental bridges use the teeth on either side of the space to fill in the gap left by the missing teeth.
But instead of porcelain, the false teeth (pontic) is made of a composite bonding material that is placed directly into the gap.
The abutment teeth require little to no modification before placement. As such, this doesn’t involve removing your enamel from the abutment teeth which minimize the risk of damage. In addition, composite bridges are relatively inexpensive, ideal for those who want an easy and affordable teeth replacement solution.
With that said, this type of bridge is susceptible to debonding and chipping due to the materials used. It is a temporary solution that is usually used by patients with periodontal disease.
Similar to Maryland bridges, composites are considered temporary and can be used by people with periodontal disease who put off removing their compromised teeth until the very end.
3. Maryland Dental Bridge
Maryland dental bridge, also known as resin bonded bridge, is designed with plastic false teeth similar to your gum material and a fortified metal frame. This metal attachment is then bonded to the abutment (natural) teeth.
A maryland dental bridge is usually attached to the front teeth, especially in cases where the abutment teeth are in stable condition.
Like composite bridges, a maryland bridge only requires minimal adjustment to the contour of the abutment teeth. This is a cost-effective and easy-to-install option.
However, the metal attachments used in the dental bridge can discolor over time. This can cause your abutment teeth to become darker. A maryland bridge also tends to debond. As such, it is often used as a temporary replacement solution.
4. Cantilever Dental Bridge
This type of dental bridge only uses one abutment tooth to support the false (pontic) tooth or teeth. It is the ideal replacement solution for those who have a missing tooth on one side of the breach, in which it is impossible to attach the crown on both sides.
It is usually connected to the front of the teeth where bite force is not that strong. This type of dental bridge also offers little flexibility. A dentist can consider the shape of your teeth to create a design that offers a comfortable bite feeling.
However, a cantilever dental bridge is not recommended for use in the back of the mouth where too much bite force can put pressure on the abutment (natural) tooth.
5. Implant-Supported Dental Bridge
As its name implies, this type of bridge uses dental implants for support as opposed to crowns or frameworks.
Usually, one implant is surgically placed in the jawbone for every missing tooth to secure the bridge and false teeth (pontic) in position.
This makes implant-supported dental bridges the most durable and stable replacement solution. They function and look like your natural teeth. In addition, they aren’t susceptible to normal biting and chewing forces. This allows you to eat, talk, and smile without having to experience discomfort or self-consciousness.
The only downside to this type of dental bridge is the fact that it would require two dental surgeries. The first one involves embedding the implants into your jawbone. Then, the second surgery is done to place the bridge on the implants.
The whole procedure can take up to several months and may be painful during those healing stages. With that said, the benefits of implant-supported dental bridges are worth the discomfort and time, especially since they last for a long time.
If you have a missing tooth or teeth, getting dental bridges might be the ideal dental cosmetic solution. It can effectively fill the gap in between your teeth, giving back your confidence. But before undergoing this treatment, it’s important to learn the different types of dental bridges to know the one that’s right for you.
Still unsure on which type of dental bridge to get? Consult the professional dentists in Quezon City! At Asian Sun Dental Clinic Manila, we can give you advice on which dental treatment is the best one for your needs. We also offer porcelain bridges for those who are looking for an affordable and reliable teeth replacement solution. Book an appointment today!
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