At Walker Dental Team, our dentists have the expertise you need when it comes to giving you the best dental care. An important part of that is helping you to counteract any damage to your teeth or unwanted gaps between them. To overcome these problems, we recommend the use of dental bridges. A dental bridge is a type of fixed prosthetic device that we can install in your mouth in order to cover injured teeth or fill openings between them.
If you are missing one or more teeth, a dental bridge can be exactly what you need to span the space where your teeth used to be. It is important to use a device like this to do so because, if not attended to, the remaining teeth in your mouth can shift into improper positions that will create a bad bite. A bad bite can then transition into nastier issues like temporomandibular joint disorders and gum disease. A dental bridge is designed to prevent this from happening and, if maintained well over time, you can ensure that the bridge will last a lifetime.
A traditional dental bridge is one that cements to your natural teeth that neighbor the empty space or spaces within your mouth. These teeth are then referred to as abutments that serve as solid anchors for a dental bridge. Within the bridge itself we place one or more pontics, or fake teeth, that are then held in place by those nearby abutments. We usually proceed to place dental crowns atop the pontics to both help keep them in place and to better protect them from damage in the future. The downside of a traditional bridge like this is that we will need to remove some of the enamel of and place dental crowns upon your neighboring abutment teeth in order to make room for the dental bridge.
While the traditional dental bridge is common and undeniably effective, there are some alternatives that may be more appealing to your preferences and unique situation. A Maryland dental bridge is one that uses porcelain or metal wings instead of crowns in order to anchor to the two adjacent teeth. A cantilever bridge is specialized to deal with scenarios where you only have one available tooth to serve as an abutment. Lastly, implant-supported bridges bypass the need to use neighboring teeth as anchors because we use implants placed on your jawbone for this purpose instead. The downside to this particular option is that it requires two surgeries: one to install the implants and one to place the bridge itself.
With all of these different kinds of dental bridges available, we will make sure that our dentist has the right choice on hand for your needs. If you think that a dental bridge is right for you and you would like to learn more, please call us today.