Unfortunately, if there’s one thing we know, it’s that nothing quite draws the attention to a smile like a missing tooth.
But fortunately, due to modern dentistry, patients can solve their missing teeth woes almost instantly and return the aesthetic appeal and functionality back to their mouths.
Whilst we can use multiple restorative dentistry treatments to fix and repair your smile immediately with implant treatments like All-on-Four, dental bridges are more conventional and inexpensive.
- Replace missing teeth easily
- An option for replacing missing teeth
- Can protect weaker neighbouring teeth
- Once treated no one can tell you had missing teeth
- Can be used to improve and stabilise your bite hence restoring your chewing ability
- Rebalances the forces that occur during chewing
- Prevents the remaining teeth from drifting out of position
- No surgery is needed as in an implant option
- Alternatively, fewer implants can be used in an implant-supported bridge
How many teeth can be in a bridge?
Dental bridges are made up of fake teeth, referred to as pontics as well as high-quality porcelain crowns that anchor the bridge in position.
Crowns attached to the teeth are referred to as abutment teeth.
Dental bridges literally bridge the gap between missing teeth and existing teeth.
A great treatment for patients who have multiple missing teeth in a row, traditional bridges can hold one to four fake teeth.
However, there are many different kinds of dental bridges that are designed to enhance your smile, no matter how many teeth you might be missing.
Types of dental bridges
The type of bridge you will be fitted with can depend on how many teeth are missing and where the surrounding, remaining teeth are located.
- Traditional: Probably the most popular type, they can hold one to four fake teeth. Often used in cases when natural teeth have positioned either side of the gap. To prepare the teeth, we will remove some enamel from these teeth so that crowns can be placed next to the natural teeth along the pontic. The bridge will be one continuous device that will perfectly fit into the gap.
- Cantilever: Similar to above, a cantilever bridge is used when there is only one tooth on one side of the gap. This tooth will need to be fitted with a crown, which will secure the pontics into position. The bridge will then fit over the natural tooth and gap.
- Maryland: A more conservative approach to replacing missing teeth, pontics are instead secured to the gum line using a metal or porcelain framework. That same framework will be attached to the teeth close to the gap.
- Implant-Supported: This type of treatment will be necessary for patients who have more than one tooth missing in a gap. In this case, the bridge will need to be supported by dental implants. However, it is one of the most comfortable dental bridges and will be the most secure compared to the other four bridge types.
Is a bridge better than an implant?
What the dentist thinks:
Truly it will depend on the patient’s condition, but if we are looking and comparing the benefits of both, then a dental implant is certainly more durable and stronger than a bridge.
This means that patients can trust that an implant will provide them with a lifetime of security and protection.
Implant technology has really advanced and can do incredible things to replace a missing tooth naturally and effectively.
Patients we treat tend to make a decision based on cost, we often explain that implants do not require any maintenance and are seen as an investment into your dental care and will prevent you from needing further appointments and spending more money.
Dental bridges can last five to 15 years, dental implants can last a lifetime.
Ceramic bridge vs metal bridge
Thanks to new technology, tooth-coloured bridges made from strong ceramics have emerged.
Ceramic dental bridges are more translucent and are virtually undetectable.
As they do not need a metal framework, dark blue lines at gum lines are eliminated. Placing instead above the gum line is also much healthier for your teeth and gums.
How long will treatment take?
- STEP 1: We will start the process with a highly detailed and thorough comprehensive examination and assessment. Your dentist will then construct a customised treatment plan and design your work.
- STEP 2: The teeth will be prepared and any necessary records will be taken before the new teeth are constructed by the ceramist.
- STEP 3: Your final new teeth will then be bonded in your mouth.
Our experienced ceramist will handcraft your bridge specific to your bite, gap, and appearance of your neighbouring teeth so the gap closure looks natural.
The length of the treatment is dependent upon the type of dental bridge design chosen.
For example, if you choose an implant-supported bridge, this can take longer to complete than a natural tooth-supported bridge due to preparatory work required in surgically placing and healing a dental implant.
For the most part, two appointments are needed: one to prepare the abutments, and the other to fit and bond the final bridge once it has been created in the laboratory.
How much does bridgework cost on teeth?
- Bridge per unit £1200
- Implant Placement £1,250
- Crowns from £1200
Relieve pressure and improve your smile
As practising dental professionals, we believe that it is not a good idea for patients to ignore gaps in their mouths. Gaps that are left untreated for longer than six months can cause more severe consequences to your overall oral health and hygiene.
For example, gum disease is likely to form, bone in the jaw is likely to decrease, no longer providing essential support for other teeth, adding further strain and causing further teeth to fall out.