Dental Bridges: Types, Eligibility, and Care Tips

Dental Bridges: Types, Eligibility, and Care Tips

May 01, 2021

For those missing one or several teeth, dental bridges are some of the most affordable and reliable tooth replacement procedures. There are countless benefits to getting a bridge, including restoring your oral function, improving your appearance, and enabling you to speak more easily.

If you would like to schedule a consultation for dental bridges, please contact Newburyport Family Dental. We provide quality dental bridges near you.

What is a Dental Bridge?

A bridge is an artificial tooth that is used to replace a missing tooth or teeth. Unlike dental implants that are surgically implanted in the missing tooth’s socket, dental bridges are typically supported by crowns placed on the healthy neighboring teeth.

Before getting dental bridges, there are a few factors that you should keep in mind, including the type of bridge, costs, material, and recovery. Bridges can be made from various materials, with the most common being porcelain, alloys of porcelain and metals, and gold. Porcelain is the most common since it matches the natural color of teeth.

Types of Dental Bridges

Generally, dental bridges are categorized into four major types, which are:

  • Traditional Bridges 

For traditional bridges, the artificial tooth is placed into the empty socket and supported by dental crowns placed on the adjacent teeth. For you to qualify for this procedure, you must have healthy teeth on both sides of the lost tooth. When placing the crowns on the adjacent teeth, the dentist shapes the adjacent teeth to allow the crowns to fit perfectly.

  • Cantilever Bridges 

These bridges are similar to traditional bridges. The only difference is that for cantilever bridges, the artificial tooth is supported by a crown placed on just one side of the missing tooth. These bridges are recommended if you only have one healthy tooth neighboring the missing tooth.

  • Maryland Bridges

In this procedure, the artificial tooth is supported by metal frameworks. These bridges are recommended if you don’t have healthy teeth next to the empty socket.

  • Implant-Supported Bridges 

These are the most complex type of dental bridges. The artificial tooth is implanted into the jawbone through surgery. Since surgery is involved, the cost of these procedures is a bit higher.

Of all the four dental bridge procedures, the Maryland is the most simple and can be fixed in a single visit to the dentist. For the rest of the procedure, you may need more visits to your dentist.

As for the recovery time, implant-supported bridges require more time to heal since surgery is involved. You should discuss with your dentist the most suitable type of bridge for you.

Who’s a Good Candidate for Dental Bridges?

While dental bridge treatment is a common solution for missing teeth, they are not suitable for everyone. Dental bridges may be a good fit for you if you have:

  • A missing tooth or teeth.
  • A severely damaged tooth.
  • Overall good health – no chronic conditions.
  • Healthy teeth and bones.

To determine whether dental bridges are right for you, visit a dental professional for an oral examination. The dentist will visually examine your oral condition and recommend the best course of action to take. Typically, a dentist will recommend a dental bridge if you don’t have enough jawbone tissue.

Caring for your Dental Bridges

Unlike dentures, you don’t remove a tooth bridge when sleeping or for cleaning. However, if they are worn out, you can talk with your dentist to have them removed and replaced. Depending on the type of material used and how well they are cared for, dental bridges can last for more than ten years. On average, most bridges last for 5 – 7 years.

Fortunately, caring for your bridge is easy—no special care is required. Just follow proper dental hygiene, and you’ll be safe. Good oral hygiene is essential for keeping the rest of the teeth in good condition, even with bridges. After the procedure, your dentist will give you some tips to care for your bridge. These include:

  • Floss and brush daily.
  • Schedule regular dental check-ups and professional cleanings.
  • Visit the dentist if your bridge is damaged.
  • Avoid sugary foods and drinks. They can increase the chances of developing tooth decay.
  • Avoid colored foods and drinks. The bridge material can be easily stained.
  • Avoid sticky and hard foods. They can pull, dislocate, or damage the bridge.

Schedule An Appointment Today

Are you still not sure whether dental bridges are suitable for you? Contact Newburyport Family Dental today for dental bridge services.

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