Many adults are losing teeth, and it is not uncommon to miss a tooth or two. Many reasons lead to missing teeth – you can lose them through injuries or infections.
Regardless of the number of teeth missing, dental bridges can help bridge the gap. Modern dental bridges have been used for the better part of the 20th century before implants came into play. Bridges are still a viable option when it comes to restorative dentistry.
But before you visit our North Highland dentist, understand what dental bridges are and their use.
In a nutshell, a typical bridge is made of porcelain bonded to a metal framework. The bridge has a false tooth at its center and two crowns on either side. The false tooth is placed in the gap, and the crowns cover the natural teeth on either side of the gap. These natural teeth act as anchors for the bridges. Your natural teeth are called the abutment teeth, while pontics is a term that refers to the false teeth.
The false teeth (pontics) can be made from porcelain alloys or a combination of materials, including gold. The abutment teeth, however, have to be stable for the proper anchoring to take place.
Before a bridge is placed on your abutment teeth, there will be some reshaping of your natural teeth. This includes chiseling away some of your enamel to provide room for the crowns.
Cantilever bridges have the pontic (false tooth) secured by one abutment tooth instead of two. The cantilever will only need one anchor tooth as opposed to two that are required when you use traditional bridges. Cantilever bridges can only be used if you have lost a tooth.
The traditional bridges are the most common bridges that are used in replacing teeth. They are made up of one or more fake teeth (pontics) that are anchored using dental crowns.
When there are teeth on either side of the gap, then the traditional bridges can be used. The abutment (natural teeth) that are used for cementing the bridges have to be reshaped to accommodate the crowns of the bridges. Since enamel never grows back, you will have to keep them covered with the crowns constantly.
This is a conservative alternative to the cantilever and traditional bridges. These bridges have their fake teeth (pontics) that utilize a framework made of porcelain or metal that is adhered to your natural teeth. What makes these bridges different from the traditional and cantilever bridges is that they do not use crowns to anchor them to the abutment teeth.
Although they still need teeth on either side of the gap for anchorage.
As opposed to the other types of bridges, these bridges are supported by dental implants. An implant has to be surgically placed where the missing tooth was, and these implants anchor the bridges. Implants will be placed according to the number of teeth being replaced.
By far, this is the most stable bridge as compared to the other types. The only drawback of this method is that you will wait up to five months for the whole process to be completed.
During your first visit, our dentist will prepare the abutment teeth. The abutment (natural teeth) will be reshaped and recontoured to fit the crowns. This, by far, is the biggest drawback of bridges.
After this, our dentist will take a dental scan of your mouth, and then your dental impressions will be taken. Then a model of your teeth is made from the impression. The pontics, bridge, and crowns are made from this model in our dental laboratory. This will ensure that the bridges will be made with the exact impressions of your teeth.
Our dentist will give you a temporary bridge to wear to protect the gums and teeth.
During the second visit, your temporary bridge will be replaced by the permanent bridge. It will be adjusted until it fits perfectly.
There are many options when it comes to teeth replacement. You might get confused over the available options. Do not hesitate to contact Olivia Rodrigues DDS to book an appointment and see what’s best for you.