Partial dentures consist of replacement teeth that are attached to a gum-colored plastic base. The base is sometimes attached to the natural teeth using a metal framework that holds it in place in the mouth. They are used to replace one or more missing teeth when the patient still has some natural teeth in their…
Dental Bridge to Replace a Missing Tooth
If you have a missing tooth, you are likely looking at replacement options. Dental bridges are one of the options. You can use one of four types of dental bridges to replace your tooth. Look at the available choices and make your decision.
Types of dental bridges to replace a missing tooth
Patients can choose traditional, cantilever, Maryland and implant-supported bridges. Each option can replace two or more missing teeth, and all but one can be used to replace a single tooth. Get the details on each option. Discover the features and benefits of each.
Most people choose traditional bridges to replace a tooth or teeth. People must have teeth located on both sides of the gap left in place by the missing teeth. Dentists remove some enamel from the teeth on either side of the gap and then place the dental bridge. The bridge is cemented in place and crowns are placed on top of the pontic.
Cantilever bridges are often recommended when the gap is located next to one tooth instead of between two teeth. The dentist prepares the enamel on the tooth next to the gap. The bridge is cemented in place much like with a traditional bridge. Since only one tooth supports the bridge, it is possible for the crown to become loose over time.
Those who prefer a more conservative approach can get Maryland bridges. Maryland bridges do not require crowns over the pontic. Because of that, the adjacent teeth do not have to be filed down to make room for the restoration. The bridge is attached to the back of the teeth located on either side of the gap.
Maryland bridges are held in place by resin. This is not as strong as dental cement, so Maryland bridges are not recommended for the molars. Also, some people find Maryland bridges uncomfortable since the framework is attached to the back instead of the sides of the teeth. The framework can bump up against the tongue when talking and eating.
Traditional, cantilever and Maryland bridges can be used to replace one or more missing teeth. Implant-supported bridges are only recommended if the patient has at least two missing teeth. The dentist places implants in the jawbone. The bridge is then attached to the implants. The implants hold the bridge securely in place. The implants also stimulate the jawbone, so people do not have to worry about bone loss.
Dentists try to place one implant for every missing tooth. However, that is not always possible. If it is not, the dentist might have to use crowns as well. The crowns will work with the implants to hold the teeth in place.
Do you need to replace a missing tooth?
If you need to replace a tooth, consider a dental bridge. You can select from traditional, cantilever, Maryland and implant-supported bridges. Your dentist will examine your mouth to see which bridge will help improve your smile. Then you can schedule the procedure and get your replacement teeth.
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