If you need to replace one tooth or several teeth in a row, you might get a dental bridge. There are several types of dental bridges available to you, each with its own unique purpose. In this guide, we will go over the styles of dental bridges so you can better understand your options.
Fixed bridges are the traditional option for tooth replacement, though the industry is shifting toward other alternatives. The teeth next to the missing tooth are known as abutment teeth. These are reshaped to make room for crowns. The bridge is anchored to the abutment teeth, creating a seamless connection from one end to the other.
Bonded bridges are an ideal choice for tooth replacement, especially for front missing teeth. Instead of reshaping the teeth next to the gap, we slightly reduce the backs of the neighboring teeth. The bridge is secured with ‘wings’ that bond to those areas. Bonded bridges look natural and remain securely in place, all with minimal interruption to other teeth.
Cantilever bridges are used when there is only one tooth next to the missing tooth. In this case, the bridge must ‘cantilever’ over the gap. Cantilever bridges must be carefully planned out to ensure they have proper support. In some cases, the dentist will use two abutment teeth side-by-side to support the cantilevered crown at the end.
Replacing a Tooth with a Dental Implant
With all dental bridges, there is a slight separation between the bridge and the gums. There is no tooth root in place where the missing tooth once was. Over time, the jawbone in that area will recede, and so will the gums. Food and drinks can get into the gap and cause tooth decay to the adjacent teeth. This decay can cause the bridge to fall out, or it can lead to other oral health issues.
What’s the solution? A dental implant with a crown. A dental implant secures into your jawbone, creating an anchor for the crown. Your bone will form around the implant as it heals, creating a firm grip and fortified strength in your jaw. This creates an ideal replica for your missing tooth, with limited long-term issues. Overall, this is the best option for replacing a tooth for long-lasting results.
If you are interested in dental bridges, custom crowns, or dental implants, the experts at Clinton Dental Center are here to help. Contact us at (586) 949-5363 to schedule an appointment.