Dental Bridges: Types, Procedure, Benefits, and Lifespan

Dental Bridges: Types, Procedure, Benefits, and Lifespan

May 01, 2021

Thanks to advanced dental technology, you no longer have to live with dental flaws. There are numerous cosmetic options available for the different types of dental problems. For instance, if you’ve lost teeth, whether from an accident, tooth damage, or old age, you can opt for a dental restoration such as a dental implant, bridge, or denture.

In this article, we’ll focus on dental bridges. Compared to dental implants, bridges are less expensive and easier to get. Additionally, a dentist may recommend a dental bridge for teeth replacement if you don’t have enough jawbone to support implants.

To determine if a dental bridge is suitable for you, contact Lexington Dental Group to schedule a consultation.

What are Dental Bridges?

Dental bridges are used to replace a missing tooth or teeth. During the treatment, the dentist places an artificial tooth where the natural tooth is missing. The artificial tooth or teeth are supported by crowns, which are attached to the adjacent teeth. Depending on your dental situation, your dentist may recommend one of the following types of bridges:

  • Traditional Bridges – For this procedure, the artificial tooth is fitted in the empty socket and supported by crowns on either side of the gap.
  • Cantilever Bridges – Here, the artificial tooth is supported by crowns, attached on adjacent teeth, only on one side of the missing tooth.
  • Maryland Bonded Bridges – For this treatment, the artificial tooth is supported by a porcelain or metal framework.
  • Implant-Supported Bridges – If the adjacent teeth aren’t healthy or strong enough to support the bridge, a dental implant may be recommended to anchor the bridge.

Are You a Good Fit for Dental Bridges?

The only sure way of determining whether or not you’re a good fit for dental bridges is to visit your dentist for a dental examination. The dentist may take X-rays to get a better understanding of your condition. They will then assess your oral condition and advise you on the best restoration treatment.

Once you are confirmed for a dental bridge, your dentist may ask you for your preference on the type of material to use for your bridge. Most artificial teeth are made from tooth-colored materials such as porcelain, ceramic, plastic, or a combination of porcelain and metal.

Your artificial tooth’s durability and strength majorly depend on the type of material used and how well the procedure was performed. Your dentist will guide you through the pros and cons of each material to make the decision easier. If you’re still not sure, ask your dentist for their recommendation.

Dental Bridge Treatment

In most cases, a dental bridge treatment takes two appointments. Here is what to expect during the treatment:

  • The dentist will numb the treatment area to keep you relaxed and comfortable during the procedure.
  • Your dentist will clean the area around the missing tooth.
  • To prepare the adjacent teeth for the placement of the dental bridge, the dentist may have to reshape them.
  • The dentist then makes an impression of the shaped teeth and sends them to a laboratory to make the permanent bridge.
  • A temporary crown is placed on the shaped tooth to protect them from damages. You’ll be sent home as you wait for the permanent bridge.
  • During the second appointment, your dentist will remove the temporary crowns and place the permanent dental bridge.
  • After the treatment, your dentist will take some time to explain a few aftercare instructions. Proper dental care is essential to ensure a lasting treatment.
  • The dentist will also schedule a follow-up appointment to review your progress.

Benefits of Dental Bridges

Wondering why it’s necessary to replace a missing tooth or teeth with bridges, here are a few benefits:

  • Improves and restores your beautiful smile.
  • Restores your ability to chew properly.
  • Allows you to speak fluently.
  • Improves and maintains your facial appearance.
  • Prevents the nearby teeth from moving out of position.
  • Restores oral function.
  • Prevents dental problems associated with missing teeth, such as jawbone loss.
  • Improves your confidence and quality of life.
  • Promotes oral and overall health.

How Long do Dental Bridges Last?

With proper care, dental bridges can last for more than ten years. The durability of your bridge may depend on factors such as:

  • Your oral health and hygiene – Poor oral hygiene and health are likely to lessen the lifetime of a bridge.
  • Type of bridge material used – The stronger the material, the longer the bridge can last.
  • Your eating habits – Eating hard foods or using your teeth to cut things can damage the bridge, reducing its lifespan.
  • The efficiency of the attachment procedure – Well-placed bridges will last longer compared to poor-fitted bridges.

Schedule a Consultation Today

If you’re looking for dental bridge treatment or need more information about dental bridges, please contact Lexington Dental Group today to schedule your consultation.

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