When you have a missing tooth, then a dental bridge may be used to restore the resulting gap. The dental bridge is basically a false tooth, beautifully created from porcelain that fills the gap and is supported by adjacent teeth or implants. Bridges are permanently fixed and cannot be taken out of your mouth like you would with dentures.
Bridges have a number of advantages. They can:
- Restore your smile
- Restore your ability to chew and speak properly
- Prevent remaining teeth from drifting out of position
- Improve your self confidence
- Distribute the forces of your bite
They can however have disadvantages and I will always discuss these with you because they are specific to each individual. The main disadvantage can be cost. A rough estimate is approximately £500 per tooth.
There are several types of bridges:
- Traditional Fixed – Fixed
Here the “false tooth” is fused between two porcelain crowns to fill the gap left by a missing tooth. There are two crowns holding it in place attached onto your teeth either side of the false tooth. This type of dental bridge can be used to replace one or more missing teeth.
In areas of your mouth that are under less stress, such as your front teeth, a cantilever dental bridge may be used. A cantilever dental bridge is when the “false tooth” is only supported on one side. The result is just as aesthetic but has the benefit that fewer teeth have to be treated.
- Resin Bonded
This type of dental bridge is better described as a sticky bridge. The “false tooth” is fused to metal “wings” that are bonded very firmly to the supporting or “abutment” tooth with a resin glue. The wings are hidden from view so that only the porcelain, which appears just like a natural tooth, is visible. Their main benefit is that healthy teeth either side normally need no preparation. They are however not as strong as the bridges discussed above.
- Implant Supported Dental bridges
Implants are the modern way to replace missing teeth. An implant is placed in the bone where the tooth root would have originally been. When it has fused to the bone it can be restored with individual crowns or, when more than one tooth is missing, with an implant supported dental bridge. Even if you have no teeth in one or both jaws, implants can be placed and an implant supported dental bridge securely fixed.
If you have a missing tooth or missing teeth and would like to discuss the possibilities of how to replace it or them, please do get in touch to have a chat to start this process.
Moreton in Marsh Dental