A bridge is a prosthesis used to close large gaps created by missing teeth. Essentially, a bridge is three or more crowns connected to one another to close gaps between your teeth. To fabricate a dental bridge, you need to have at least one healthy tooth on each side of the missing tooth/teeth. The teeth used as anchors are known as abutments and the missing teeth which are being replaced are known as pontics.
A bridge is one option to replace one or more missing tooth. Placing a bridge is a much better option than leaving gaps between your teeth. Once you lose a tooth, the adjacent two teeth and opposing tooth start to drift into the missing gap. Over time, this creates bite issues. Plus, leaving a gap in your mouth leads to cavities on neighboring teeth. Placing a bridge on your teeth prevents these issues from happening.
The alternatives to a bridge are dental implants and dentures. In most cases, a dental implant is a better option than a bridge. This is because implants don’t damage adjacent teeth, whereas placing a bridge requires shaving of adjacent teeth. This could lead to problems on these neighboring teeth such as requiring a root canal or even losing the anchoring teeth. Plus, it is much more difficult to clean underneath a bridge as compared to caring for dental implants.
There are cases where placing a bridge makes more sense than getting an implant, for instance:
- If the teeth adjacent to a missing tooth already have crowns, or require crowns, then a bridge may be an easier way to close this gap.
- Sometimes there may not be enough bone to place a dental implant so it makes sense to place a bridge instead.
- If the gap between two teeth is too narrow, there may not be enough space to insert a dental implant. Again, a bridge becomes the better solution to close these smaller gaps.
Only you and your dentist can determine whether a bridge or dental implant is better for you. To lean more about bridges and alternatives, call us at (949) 481-2540 or book online today. We will review your treatment options to see if you’re a good candidate for bridge work.
To learn more about treatments related to dental bridges, click on the following links: