At Aspen Dental, we help you understand how a dental bridge can complete your smile without surgery. Dental bridge procedures offer a solution to patients with missing teeth by filling the space with a false tooth that looks and feels natural. The new tooth is held in place by two crowns on each side of it.
A dental bridge can help your teeth work together to chew, speak and smile. When you lose a tooth, the nearby teeth may shift and misalign. This may make it harder to talk clearly, chew food or even clean between them, putting you at greater risk for tooth decay and gum disease.
We all want to look and feel our best. But when you're missing teeth, your lip line can appear straighter. You may develop jowls on either side of the lower jaw. A dental bridge procedure can help restore the natural fullness of your face since it acts as an artificial tooth replacement solution.
Additionally, a missing tooth in your lower jaw may cause a tooth in your upper jaw to shift down into that space. That shifting can make your teeth uneven. This affects your bite, placing more stress on your teeth and jaw joints, and may cause pain and damage. Dental bridges can help mitigate this.
When considering all your tooth replacement options, dental bridges are an excellent aesthetic solution for missing teeth—if the surrounding bone is sturdy enough to support it. You may also consider other treatment, like a partial denture, single-tooth implant or no treatment at all. Talk to your Aspen Dental care team about what’s best for your dental health needs.
Bridges are made from metal, porcelain, ceramics or a combination of the three. Your dentist at Aspen Dental can provide you with information about which materials are best for you and your mouth.
Traditional bridges are made up of a collection of crowns (called retainer teeth) and one or more pontics, which are artificial teeth that take the place of the missing ones. In a traditional bridge, the pontic is secured by two or more crowns.
Cantilever bridges are similar to a traditional dental bridge, but only use one natural tooth to help secure the replacement tooth. Since this option isn’t as strong as a fixed bridge, cantilever bridges are sometimes used to fill gaps closer to the front of the mouth.
Maryland dental bridges use metal, porcelain, and/or ceramic wings to bind a replacement tooth to the backs of adjoining, natural teeth. Your dentist may opt for this approach for patients whose health makes them a poor candidate for a more invasive procedure—or as a temporary fix while awaiting a more permanent solution, such as when an implant is healing.
Small, titanium fixtures surgically implanted into the jawbone hold an implant-supported bridge in place. Unlike other bridges, they do not need support from the surrounding teeth. This is oftentimes the preferred solution when multiple teeth in a row are missing.