Upon losing one or more teeth, there are several different options for replacing them. One of these is called the dental bridge. In this article we are going to go through the most important things about this solution. How it’s made? How much does it cost? Does it hurt? These are the questions we are going to discuss with our specialist.
In this article we discussed what dental crowns are, so it is time to talk about bridges; which may seem identical for the uninitiated. In reality, they serve a completely different purpose.
– says Dr. Gábor Szaszovszky, aesthetic dentist. This solution can be used to replace a single tooth, or more, or in some cases entire arches.“The purpose of a dental bridge is to replace missing teeth. The adjacent teeth are called pillars, as they are the ones supporting the bridge. These pillars can be dental implants as well. In order to fit the bridge, we need to prepare the teeth, just as we would do with crowns.”
The good and the better
At first glance it may seem horrifying to prepare otherwise healthy teeth, but sometimes it is necessary. For example, if the patient lacks the bone required to receive a dental implant, but has two healthy teeth adjacent to the missing one, a dental bridge can be a suitable option. „Another important factor is the price. It’s cheaper than implants, and much quicker. However, the price depends on the material used. „ Just like dental crowns, bridges can be made out of different materials, and the most frequently used types are porcelain fused to metal and zirconium. „There’s no good or bad option to choose from, only good and better. The only difference is the overall aesthetic result, as the zirconium bridge provides a more natural look. Porcelain fused to metal crowns may show metal bits after a certain time, due to gum recession.”
From the impression to the happy smile
No matter which material we choose to go with, the process – for the patient – will be the same. First of all, the teeth needs to be prepared. Then we take an impression, using the wonder of modern dentistry, the oral scanner. „When preparing the pillars, we need to keep in mind to do it in a parallel way, otherwise the bridge won’t fit. The last stage is the fitting.” – says the expert. Once the frame is completed, we do a frame try and also discuss the colors with the patient. The fitting is done with the help of a special cement. Normally there is no need for surgical intervention, therefore there is no healing time involved. The most time consuming part is waiting for the cement to dry. Once the numbness goes away, we can freely eat, drink, and speak as if nothing has happened.
What’s the catch?
„With proper care, a dental bridge’s life expectancy can be around 10-12 years. While the bridge may seem completely fine, there could be problems underneath, that cannot be spotted even with the most modern X-rays.”
Having regular checkups and cleaning sessions with a hygienist is still recommended, to avoid any surprises.