Dental Bridges: Types, Eligibility, Benefits, Cons, Recovery, and Cost
If you’ve lost a tooth, it’s essential to get a replacement tooth as soon as possible. While you may have several dental procedures to choose from, a dental bridge is one of the most popular options and is worth considering.
What Are Dental Bridges?
Dental bridges are artificial teeth that mimic the size and shape of your natural teeth. A dental bridge closes the gap left behind by the missing teeth. Unlike dental implants, which are surgically implanted, dental bridges are held by dental crowns fitted on the adjacent healthy tooth or teeth.
The false or artificial teeth are known as pontics and are usually crafted from various materials such as gold, porcelain, plastic, alloys, or a combination of many materials. There are four types of dental bridges:
- Traditional dental bridges
- Maryland dental bridges
- Cantilever dental bridge
- Implant-supported dental bridges
The major difference among all these procedures is how the false tooth is fixed into your mouth. For traditional bridges, the artificial tooth is held by two dental crowns placed on the two healthy teeth adjacent to the missing tooth.
For cantilever bridges, the artificial tooth is supported by one dental crown placed on the healthy tooth next to the missing tooth. For Maryland bridges, the false tooth is supported by a framework made of metal or porcelain.
The last and most expensive type of dental bridge procedure is implant-supported bridges. These bridges are implemented in the area of the missing tooth.
Who Is Eligible for Dental Bridges?
While a dental bridge is a simple procedure that doesn’t necessarily require any surgery, not everyone is a good candidate for the procedure. However, you may be a good fit if you:
- Have one or more missing teeth
- Have good oral health—no serious dental conditions such as an infection or gum disease
- Have healthy teeth around the area of the missing teeth
- Have a strong jawbone
To check if you’re qualified for a dental bridge, please schedule a consultation with our dentist at Advanced Dental of Westport, CT. If you don’t qualify, our dentist will recommend another solution.
Benefits of Dental Bridges
Missing a tooth or teeth is bad for your dental, physical, and psychological health. For instance, it can encourage bone loss, a sagging face, lack of confidence, and the inability to chew and speak properly.
A dental bridge can address such side effects by:
- Restoring your ability to chew and eat properly
- Restoring your smile, self-esteem, and confidence
- Keeping the remaining teeth in position
- Improving and maintaining your facial appearance
- Restoring your speech fluency
Disadvantages of Dental Bridges
Like any other procedure, dental bridges have some disadvantages. They include:
- The crowns used may alter the structure of the teeth, which can affect your bite.
- Ill-fitting bridges can move, slip, or collapse.
- Ill-fitted bridges can encourage the growth of bacteria and plaque.
- It is not the longest-lasting dental solution. You may have to replace your dental bridge every 5 to 10 years.
Risks of Complications
Since dental bridges rarely require surgery, there are very minimal risks. After the procedure, it’s normal to feel some discomfort, but that’s all. If you experience any ongoing side effects, visit our dentist near you immediately.
What’s the Cost of a Dental Bridge?
The cost of a dental bridge treatment may vary depending on several factors, such as:
- The number of missing teeth that need to be filled
- The material of the bridge
- Additional dental treatments required, such as bone grafting or gum disease treatment
- The type of dental bridge you select, with implant-supported bridges being the most expensive.
How Long Do Dental Bridges Last?
Well-fitted dental bridges can last for about 5 to 15 years. However, you have to practice good oral hygiene. In addition, regular dentist visits for professional dental cleaning and check-ups are recommended.
For your daily oral hygiene, remember to:
- Brush your teeth daily
- Floss daily
- Eat a healthy diet
- Stay hydrated
Schedule a Consultation
It’s essential to practice proper oral hygiene, both before and after getting a dental bridge. This will keep your teeth and gums healthy, thereby reducing the chances of infections and dental diseases such as gum disease, which eventually leads to tooth loss.
If you’re considering getting a dental bridge in Westport, give Advanced Dental of Westport, CT, a call to schedule a consultation. We are always happy to help our patients in any way that we can, and we look forward to seeing you here soon!