If you have missing teeth, one option is to receive a dental implant, a sort of artificial tooth root that is inserted into your jawbone. Your other option is a dental bridge, which is a false tooth (called a pontic) that is held in place by the abutment teeth on either side of the gap. Although pontics can be made from a variety of materials, such as gold, typically they’re made from porcelain to aesthetically blend in with your natural teeth. Read below to learn more about the different types of dental bridges and how our South Charlotte cosmetic dentists can help bridge the gaps in your smile!
There are four main types of dental bridges: Traditional dental bridges; cantilever bridges; Maryland bridges; and implant-supported bridges. We will describe each type in more detail below.
A traditional dental bridge is a false tooth, or set of teeth, that is held in place by two dental crowns cemented onto each of the abutment teeth. A traditional bridge is the most popular type of dental bridge, and is typically used when the patient has healthy, natural teeth on either side of the tooth gap.
Although similar to a traditional bridge, the pontic in a cantilever dental bridge is held in place by a dental crown that is cemented to only one abutment tooth. For a cantilever bridge, you only need one natural tooth next to the missing tooth gap.
Just like a traditional bridge, Maryland dental bridges employ two natural abutment teeth, one on each side of the gap. However, while a traditional bridge places dental crowns on the abutment teeth, a Maryland bridge uses a framework of either metal or porcelain that is bonded onto the backs of the abutment teeth. Like a traditional bridge, a Maryland bridge can only be used when you have a natural tooth on each side of the tooth gap.
As the name implies, implant-supported bridges use dental implants to hold the bridge teeth in place. Typically, one implant is surgically placed on each side of every “middle” missing tooth. Considered the strongest and most stable system, an implant-supported bridge commonly requires two surgeries: one to embed the implants in the jawbone, and a second to place the bridge. It can take a number of months for the procedure to be completely finished, but once complete, the artificial teeth will be very sturdy and virtually identical to genuine teeth.
If you’re missing a tooth or a number of teeth, you have many different replacement options to consider. Be sure to stop on by our South Charlotte NC cosmetic dentist to discuss these options with one of our caring, friendly dentists. We will outline all the factors, such as costs, that will help you make a decision. To schedule an appointment, click here.