Dental bridge: Things you should know

A dental bridge is a false teeth that is used to replace one or more missing or damaged teeth. Bridges are used to hold false teeth in place by using one or more natural teeth on either side of the gap.

Bridges can be fixed, which means that they are permanently installed, or detachable, which indicates that they can be removed by a person.

Dentists refer each fake tooth in a bridge as a “pontic,” and some healthcare professionals refer to a bridge as a “fixed partial denture.” A bridge is made up of several false teeth connected together by a metal framework.

Dental bridges are discussed in further detail in this article.

What is a dental bridge?

What is a dental bridge?
A dental bridge may be recommended by a dentist to replace one or more missing or damaged teeth.

A dental bridge can be used to replace a single tooth or a set of teeth. The false teeth used in dental bridges are designed to look and function like natural teeth.

A person who needs a bridge may see a prosthodontist, who is a dentist who specializes in repairing and replacing lost teeth, or a general dentist for treatment. In either case, there are numerous solutions available for closing a gap in a grin.

One alternative is to have a crown, which is a false bit of tooth that is affixed to a little amount of actual tooth that has been ground down by the dentist.

When a person has lost a tooth or the dentist has been forced to remove it, a crown alone may not be an option, and a dental bridge may be the best alternative.

The term “bridge” refers to a construction that is made up of one or more false teeth that are connected together. One or more crowns on either side of the gap in the mouth are frequently used to hold the construction.  Suppose a person loses multiple front teeth due to accident or decay; a dentist may recommend a bridge to fill in the gap caused by the loss of the teeth.

It is possible that a person may not want to have a gap between their teeth after having a tooth extracted for a variety of reasons, including needing a tooth in the region for chewing or aesthetic considerations.

A permanent dental implant might be an excellent option to a bridge for certain people. Dental implants are artificial teeth that dentists surgically implant into the bone to replace missing teeth.

Others may benefit from dental implants, which can assist to secure a bridge, particularly if a large number of teeth are missing.

Usage

A dental bridge can assist a person in feeling more confident about their smile by enhancing it. It may also make it possible for them to chew normally.

It is possible that a person’s bite will be affected by the loss of one or more teeth, resulting in pain or trouble eating. These problems can be avoided by having those teeth replaced.

If any of the following apply to you, you may require a bridge:

  • When a tooth is severely decayed, it either falls out or is removed by a dentist
  • An accident or injury causes a tooth to become irreparably damaged
  • When decay or infection has reached such a deep level within a tooth that neither a filling nor a root canal will be sufficient

Types of dental bridge

Dentists employ a variety of bridges, including:

  • A traditional bridge consists of two crowns — commonly referred to as abutments — that serve as anchors for the false tooth or teeth. A fixed bridge is the most common form of bridge, and it can be either permanent or temporary.
  • A cantilever bridge includes only one crown for assistance. This includes a less invasive process and may be a suitable choice for those who do not want to risk damaging their healthy teeth during their surgery. The single crown, on the other hand, can serve as a lever, increasing the likelihood of tooth and jaw injury.
  • Maryland bridges are much more conservative and less invasive unlike traditional or cantilever bridges. The bridge is secured to the teeth on each side of the gap by metal or porcelain frames that are connected to the backs of the teeth on either side. These bridges can help to preserve healthy teeth, although they are less stable than traditional bridges.
  • Implant-supported bridges Using dental implants as anchors is a good idea. This sort of bridge is more costly and intrusive than other types, but it is also more secure.

Things to s expect

The specific method varies depending on the type of bridge being installed.

When a traditional bridge is used to close a gap in the mouth, the process begins with the preparation of the teeth on each side. In order to remove any decay from this set of teeth, the dentist will grind them down. Following that, they will take an imprint of the mouth that will be used to assist with the fitting of the bridge..

In order to safeguard the injured teeth, the dentist will place a temporary bridge over them. Permanent bridges are structures that appear like natural teeth, but they are not permanent, thus it is important to visit the dentist within a few weeks of receiving a temporary bridge.

Once the final bridge is complete, the dentist will remove the temporary structures and attach the final bridge to the teeth using powerful adhesives.

Cantilever bridges are constructed in a same manner, with the exception that just one tooth will require a crown. Because there are no crowns involved in a Maryland bridge, less preparation is required. Both of these bridges require at least two visits in order to be completed.

When a person has implants placed to support a bridge, the procedure is generally initiated with implant surgery in the mouth. Following that, the dentist will take an imprint of the patient’s mouth in order to construct a bridge that will fit smoothly over the implants.

Recovery process

Following a dentist’s grinding down of the teeth, a person’s mouth may become painful and sore. It is also possible that it will be painful following the implantation of the bridge. It is possible that the gums will be sensitive and bleed.

The majority of people report that this discomfort subsides within a few days. However, it is possible that the gums will require several weeks to fully recover from the treatment.

It is possible for a person to return to work or school as soon as they feel well enough, which is generally the next day after the visit.

People who opt to be sedated during the bridge insertion process should refrain from driving for at least 24 hours following the surgery.

Anyone who has implants may have nausea and vomiting after waking up from anesthesia. They, too, should refrain from driving and may require help for the first day or two following the surgery.

In order to properly maintain a bridge, it is necessary to:

  • Maintaining good oral hygiene on a regular basis will help to avoid additional deterioration.
  • A dentist should be seen twice a year so that the bridge can be checked for damage and the teeth may be cleaned.
  • Inquire with your dentist about if it is necessary to avoid particular meals.

Problems

Some of the potential problems of a dental bridge are as follows:

  • Infection. Some patients develop infections as a result of therapy, particularly if they have extensive tooth decay or periodontal disease.
  • Tooth decay. It is conceivable for a tooth to continue to deteriorate underneath the crown that serves as the bridge’s support. This is more frequent in patients who have significant gum disease or cavities in their teeth that are so bad that they require crowns.
  • Pain or difficulties chewing. Some people find it difficult to adjust to chewing with a bridge, particularly in the first few weeks following the operation. If your bite does not feel quite correct, you should visit your dentist for an adjustment.
  • Failure of the bridge. It is possible that the bridge will break or fall out of position. It is possible that a person will require another bridge, implants, or other dental treatments.

It is critical to maintain proper oral hygiene at home, including brushing and flossing, in order to avoid tooth decay surrounding a bridge. Some floss products are intended for use with bridges, while others are not.

When you work with a skilled dentist and properly follow their aftercare recommendations, you can decrease the likelihood of experiencing significant problems.

Conclusion

A person’s appearance, ability to consume particular foods, and overall quality of life might be negatively impacted by decaying or missing teeth. Dental bridges are used to improve the appearance of the bite and smile.

There are risks and advantages to using any dental prosthesis. Before committing to any operation, talk to your dentist about all of the variables and alternatives that are available to you.

Sources

  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4184647/
  • https://www.ada.org/en/~/media/ADA/Publications/Files/ADA_PatientSmart_Bridges
  • https://www.gotoapro.org/bridges/
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/327182
  • https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/b/bridges
  • https://www.ada.org/en/~/media/ADA/Publications/Files/ADA_PatientSmart_Crowns
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4589703/
  • http://www.jdas.in/article.asp?issn=2277-4696;year=2016;volume=5;issue=2;spage=84;epage=88;aulast=Oswal
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3313584/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6610968/

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