Missing Teeth » Bridges
Teeth can be lost due to irreversible gum disease, decay or trauma. Missing teeth are a cause of embarrassment and you may become hesitant to interact with people socially. The voids created in your dentition due to missing teeth may also affect your speech orientation and facial symmetry. The teeth surrounding the gap may become disoriented due to lack of support and extra space. Do not suffer in silence. Visit our friendly dentists at Conway House Dental Practice, who will help you find the best solution for you. One option is a dental bridge. Other options include dentures or implants.
What are dental bridges?
The dental bridge is a false tooth or few, carefully created from a material called porcelain that fills the gap due to missing tooth and is supported by adjacent teeth or implants. It can be used if you have one or more missing teeth and is fixed in the mouth, and expertly-made bridges may the false tooth look like it is emerging from the gum. At Conway House Dental, our Implant Specialist can use his artistic eye and gum manipulation to ensure your bridge is as life-like as possible.
There are a few different types of bridges:
- Conventional Bridge- It is used when teeth are present on both sides of the gap. A conventional bridge is where the false tooth is held in place by two crowns (caps) on the adjacent teeth. This type of bridge can be used to replace more than one tooth. Dental crown and bridge placement requires prior preparation of the abutment teeth, to make them durable enough to hold the prosthesis in place.
- Cantilever Dental Bridge- It can be used nearer the front of the mouth, where the false tooth is supported by only one tooth. On the other side, the tooth may be absent or not durable enough to retain the prostheses. The supporting tooth can be prepared and covered by a crown (cap) or can have a thin piece of metal or ceramic on the inner surface of it. The choice of design depends on whether there is a large filling in this supporting tooth or not. If we use the design where there is no preparation of a healthy, filling-free adjacent tooth, this is called a Maryland or Resin-bonded bridge. The thin piece of metal or ceramic with a Maryland bridge is hidden from sight, so both designs are aesthetic!
- Implant-Supported Dental Bridge- This is used where you have a space in your mouth created by more than one missing tooth. A single implant (screw in the bone) can be placed and a false tooth put on the implant attached to another false tooth with no implant screw beneath it. The benefit of this means the treatment is less invasive and less costly than having 2 implants.
The material used for making dental bridges
The material used for making dental bridges can be categorised into two main types
- Metal-Based - Precious metals such as gold are commonly used for making dental bridges. Other metal base alloys, such as nickel-chromium, are also used.
- Non-Metal Based- Acrylic resins and porcelain in association with metals can also be used to make dental bridges. Another non-metal base substance is ceramics, which can be zirconia, silica, or alumina.
Commonly Asked Questions
Dental bridges vs. implants- which is better?
If you are in a dilemma whether you should choose dental implants or bridges, then here are a few points that you must keep in mind.
- A dental bridge can usually be fixed in 2-3 visits to the dentists, but implant placement is a lengthy procedure.
- Another thing to keep in mind is how long do dental bridges last? A dental bridge may require a replacement after 5-15 years but dental implants and for a lifetime.
How many visits does it take to make a bridge?
After we have agreed on a plan, you will attend an appointment to prepare for the bridge. This may or may not involve an adjustment to the shape of the supporting tooth, a mould or intraoral scan of your teeth and a colour match of your natural teeth to get a natural end result. If the tooth needs preparing, you will be provided with a topical anaesthetic cream and a local anaesthetic injection. You will be given a temporary version of your bridge while we wait for our skilled laboratory technician to make the bridge.
The second visit 2 weeks later involves removing the temporary bridge and fitting the long-term bridge, once you are fully satisfied and happy with the appearance.
What are the advantages of dental bridges?
Dental Bridges offer you a plethora of advantages.
These can be placed in a short duration, usually within 2-3 visits to the dentist. Dental Bridges for front teeth restore the aesthetic charm of your smile. They also help in complete restoration of the function of teeth, including chewing and biting.
In addition, they are durable and do not require periodic removal for cleaning or maintenance.
How long does a bridge last?
The longevity of a bridge depends on the way you care for it. It is possible to get decay on the tooth/teeth supporting the false tooth if you do not ensure optimum oral hygiene and a tooth-friendly diet. If well-looked after a bridge can last 10 years or more.
How much is a bridge?
The cost of a bridge depends on its design and the materials used to make it. The investment is from £350 per tooth, but an accurate quotation can be provided at a consultation appointment.
At Conway House Dental Practice, we are a team of highly professional and skilled dentists, who offers you treatments of unsurpassable quality. We will also guide you towards the adoption of healthy oral practice and enable you to have robust and healthy teeth. If you have missing teeth, visit us and let our expert dentist find the perfect solution for you.