When looking to replace missing teeth, dental brides are a very good option. These false teeth are attached to neighbouring teeth with the purpose of filling the gap cause by the original missing teeth. A false tooth is often known as a “pontic”. The teeth are bridged together with the pontic merged between two crowns acting as anchors to the teeth either side of the false tooth.
The elements of a fixed dental bridge.
A common dental bridge basically contains:
A false tooth (Pontic) which may be made from alloys, gold, porcelain or a combination of these is used to fill the gap by replacing the missing tooth.
Two crowns – used to hold the pontic in place by anchoring.
When are dental bridges needed?
Dental Bridges are strongly advised as a missing tooth can effect:
A person’s bite. This comes as a result of the teeth leaning into the empty spaces and altering the way in which the lower and upper teeth bite together.
A person’s general appearance, oral health and smile.
The way in which a person speaks.
Overall facial confidence.
The actual shape of the face.
The probability of developing gum disease or tooth decay as a result of the accumulated food in the gap.
The amount of dental implants and/or cosmetic dentistry required.
Do missing teeth need to be replaced?
The following are all reasons as to why missing teeth should be replaced and dental implants considered:
In order to eliminate some of the strain at either side of the missing tooth.
To stop the bite being altered by teeth leaning into the gap of the missing tooth.
To reduce the risk of gum disease and tooth decay as a result of accumulated food in the gap.
Dental bridges and their different types
Traditional fixed bridge These are the most popular kind of dental bridge that is made of two porcelain crowns anchored between neighbouring teeth or dental implants with a pontic in the middle. As the name suggests, these dental bridges are fixed in and can’t be taken out. The pontic is mostly made from porcelain fused to either metal or ceramics.
A Maryland bridge or resin bonded bridge Both of these bridges are only appropriate when the teeth either side of the gap are healthy and strong or if the gap from a missing front tooth. The pontic is created by fusing plastic with metal bands bonded to neighbouring teeth with resin. As always, the fused bands are hidden from the view of others.
Cantilever bridges These kinds of bridges are really made for areas of lower stress such as the lower front teeth. Cantilever bridges are needed when there is only one tooth present on a side of an empty gap, the pontic is anchored to only one (but sometimes more) adjacent teeth on one side.
Just how long can you expect dental bridges to last?
Given that you have have good dental hygiene and eating habits, your dental bridges can last upto 10-15 years. They under no circumstances last forever.
The advantages of dental bridges
Generally, you only require two appointments to fit a bridge.
If you make sure to keep good dental hygiene then they can last for 10-15 years.
Thorough having missing teeth, you your speech, bite and overall appearance can be affected. Bridges are a solution to these and other problems.
The disadvantages of dental bridges
When in extreme temperatures, either too hot or too cold, teeth can sometimes become mildly more sensitive for a few weeks.
Healthy tooth tissue from neighbouring teeth is required in order for them to be prepared.
If you have poor hygiene then your gums and teeth may become susceptible to infection and the accumulation of bacteria as a result of the food acids.
Cox & Hitchcock Dental Group, providing Dental Implants, Cosmetic Treatments, Teeth Whitening and General Dentistry in Cardiff and Newport