Dental bridges offer patients who are missing at least one to three adjacent teeth the opportunity to effectively restore their smiles. Regardless of your dental situation, the dentists at Ocala Dental Care offer a tooth replacement solution that can transform your oral health and appearance. Our dentists offer fixed, Maryland, and cantilever dental bridges at our Ocala, FL, office to replace missing teeth. Each of our dentists is dedicated to staying up-to-date with the latest tools and techniques in dentistry in order to provide patients with the best care possible.
What is a Dental Bridge?
A dental bridge is a type of restoration used when you have one or more teeth missing in a row. Just as the name states, it is designed to help bridge the space left behind. This restorative device can be supported by remaining teeth on either side of the gap, or by dental implants surgically implanted into your jawbone. An implant-retained bridge provides optimal strength and support. Dental bridges are typically made from a single block of porcelain so as to provide both durability and natural-looking aesthetics.
Types of Dental Bridges
When choosing a bridge, there are a few different options available. At Ocala Dental Care, we offer:
- Fixed Bridges: As the most commonly chosen and recommended type of dental bridge, a fixed dental bridge is generally made of porcelain or porcelain-fused-to-metal and provides realistic aesthetics. Depending on the amount of tooth loss, they consist of at least one artificial tooth (pontic) fused to a dental crown on either side. The dental crowns are then permanently bonded to remaining teeth or dental implants.
- Maryland Bridges: Also referred to as an adhesive bridge, a Maryland bridge consists of a metal framework with at least one pontic (made from porcelain) secured to the front of the framework. The metal pieces jutting out on either side of the tooth give the appearance of the tooth having wings. These are securely bonded to the backside of the remaining teeth on either side of the gap to provide a secure hold and seamless fit.
- Cantilever Bridges: Similar in style and function to a fixed bridge, a cantilever bridge is recommended when only one abutment tooth is available on the other side of the missing tooth. It is often made of two dental crowns fused to the pontic on the end rather than in the middle. However, depending on the level of support required, it can be made of a single pontic and one single crown. This type of bridge is generally made of porcelain or porcelain-fused-to-metal.
How Dental Bridges are Placed
During your initial consultation, one of our doctors will use state-of-the-art technology to review the severity of your tooth loss and determine the type of restoration best suited for your needs. Patients with insufficient jawbone tissue or those looking for a faster replacement option may prefer a fixed dental bridge using their remaining teeth as support rather than undergoing dental implant surgery. Once your dentist has established a treatment plan for you, a follow-up appointment will be set to begin the preparation phase. Patients choosing an implant-supported bridge will first require dental implant placement.
Dental bridges offer patients who are missing at least one to three adjacent teeth the opportunity to effectively restore their smiles.
Patients choosing a traditional bridge will need to have abutment teeth reshaped to ensure the crown fits seamlessly and comfortably. A temporary bridge can be placed while you wait for your customized restoration to be made. Once the abutment teeth have been adequately prepared or when you have fully recovered from dental implant surgery, impressions will be taken of your teeth. Our onsite dental lab will use these impressions to fabricate your customized dental bridge. In approximately two weeks, your bridge will be permanently secured to your implant posts or abutment teeth.
Benefits of Dental Bridges
When your dental bridge is securely in place, you could enjoy:
- Improved speech and dental function
- Restored, realistic aesthetics
- The ability to smile freely and confidently
- Long-lasting results
Those patients who choose an implant-supported bridge will also enjoy a strengthened jawbone and better oral health since dental implants effectively replace the tooth root and halt further jawbone recession.
Schedule Your Consultation
To learn more about dental bridges and the type that would be best suited to your needs, contact our office online today. You can also call our office at (352) 237-6196 to speak to a member of our team with any questions you may have.