Dental bridges are the best replacements for a series of missing teeth. For example, if you’re missing three or more teeth in a row, you can replace them with a single set of dental bridges. The fake teeth are known as “pontics” — they replace the missing teeth and are supported on both sides by dental crowns or dental implants, called “abutments”.

At Sapphire Smiles Dentistry, we can examine your teeth and your requirements to discuss all of your dental bridge options. Please continue reading for a detailed discussion of dental bridges at Sapphire Smiles Dentistry.

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Before and After

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Types of Dental Bridges

There are four primary types of dental bridges depending on how they’re supported and whether they’re supported by dental crowns or dental implants. The following is a brief overview of the various types of dental bridges. 

Traditional Dental Bridge

Traditional dental bridges, also known as conventional bridges, are made of pontics supported on both sides by dental crowns. To get a traditional dental bridge, the dentist will have to shave off some of the structure from the surrounding teeth so they can attach dental crowns and support the dental bridge. This is a permanent or fixed dental bridge because the surrounding teeth are filed down to a small stub, making the process irreversible.

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Cantilever Dental Bridge

Cantilever dental bridges also use dental crowns to support the bridge. However, in this case, the dentist only attaches a dental crown to one side of the missing teeth. This procedure is also fixed and permanent because one of your teeth is still shaved down to a small stub, making it an irreversible process.

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Maryland Dental Bridge

Maryland dental bridges are the types of dental bridges in which the dentist doesn’t alter the structure of your original teeth, making it a reversible process. The pontics, in this case, will be anchored by metallic or porcelain abutments on both sides. However, since these abutments aren’t as durable as dental crowns or implants, a maryland dental bridge isn’t as structurally sound as other types of dental bridges. These dental bridges are often used as trials before the permanent dental bridge and they’re never used to replace the molars.

Dental Implant Bridge

Dental implant bridges are the strongest replacements for missing teeth because the dentist doesn’t have to alter the structure of any of your healthy teeth but it’s still strong and durable. During this procedure, the dentist screws a metallic or titanium post into the jawbone of the missing teeth on the outer edges. For example, if you have three missing teeth, then the dentist will plant implants on the first and third missing teeth. Over time, your jawbone naturally grows around the implant, making it a part of your dental framework. Once your jawbone has healed completely, the pontics are placed with the implants for support. However, you can only get a dental implant bridge if you have sufficient bone structure under your missing teeth. If not, you may need to get a bone graft first.

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Dental Crowns and Bridges Procedure

The following are the steps involved in the dental bridge procedure:

  • The dentist will inspect your teeth and identify which treatments are most suitable for you. They’ll also discuss your goals and your treatment options so you can make an informed decision.
  • The dentist will ask you to bite down on a dental mold and they’ll take exact impressions of your teeth so they can prepare a set of dental bridges that accurately resemble your teeth.
  • If you choose a traditional or cantilever dental bridge, the dentist will have to prepare your teeth by shaving off the surrounding teeth so they can receive the dental crowns.
  • If you choose a dental implant bridge, the dentist will examine if you have enough bone structure for implants. If so, they’ll screw titanium implants into the jawbone of the missing teeth.
  • The dentist will send a mold of your teeth to the laboratory so they can prepare a set of dental bridges for you.
  • For traditional or cantilever dental bridges, the dentist will place the bridge in place, anchored by the crowns on either side.
  • For dental implant bridges, you’ll have to wait for several months so your jawbone can heal before you get the dental bridge.
  • The dentist will make final adjustments to the dental bridge.
  • You may have to return in a few weeks so they can inspect the dental bridge once again.

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Dental Bridges Q&A

What is the best material for dental bridge?

Porcelain is widely considered to be the best material for dental bridges because they’re extremely strong and they look just like real teeth. Porcelain has a texture that closely resembles that of enamel and it also reflects light similarly.

What metal is used for dental bridges?

The metal used for dental bridges is generally an alloy of metals like chromium, cobalt, palladium, gold, and silver.

How is a bridge attached to teeth?

A dental bridge is attached with the help of abutment or anchoring teeth on either side of the bridge made of dental crowns or dental implants.

How long after extraction can a bridge be fitted?

After tooth extraction, you have to wait for about five to six months for your gums to stabilize before getting a dental bridge. In the meantime, however, you can wear a temporary bridge.

Are dental bridges removable?

Dental bridges are generally fixed in place but they may also be removable, which is the case in maryland dental bridges. 

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Affordable Dental Bridges Near Me

At Sapphire Smiles Dentistry, we have some of the best restorative dentists who examine your teeth and provide the best dental bridges for your needs. For more information, please schedule your dental bridges appointment today.