If you have missing teeth, a dental bridge can be used to fill or bridge the gaps in your smile.
A dental bridge is a false tooth or teeth, held in place by crowns on either side of the gap. These false teeth are called pontics. These are usually made of porcelain, gold, or alloys. Dental bridges can be supported by either natural teeth or implants.
Low-cost dental bridges are available in Mexico, Thailand, El Salvador, and Costa Rica, where one can save 60-70% of the prices charged in the U.S., Canada, and Australia.
Advantages of Dental Bridges
Missing teeth can affect you in a number of ways. Here is how dental bridges help:
- Restore your smile.
- Reestablish the ability to chew properly.
- Make the speech clearer.
- Maintain the shape of your face.
- Prevent the remaining teeth from moving out of position.
Types of Dental Bridges
Dental bridges are classified in two ways.
According to the first classification, there are two types: fixed and removable dental bridges.
A removable dental bridge is made when there are not enough teeth in the mouth for the setting up of a fixed dental bridge.
- Pros: These are cheaper than fixed bridges.
- Cons: These rest on the gums, and cause accelerated bone loss.
A fixed dental bridge stays in the mouth permanently. You can brush and floss just like you did before.
- Pros: These do not need to be removed, very esthetic.
- Cons: Tooth preparation needs to be done.
Further, fixed bridges can be of four types:
Traditional Dental Bridges
- The most popular kind of dental bridge. It consists of a false tooth/pontic being held in place by dental crowns/abutments. These would be cemented onto your adjacent teeth.
- They are usually made of either porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) or ceramics.
- Traditional bridges can be used when you have natural teeth on both sides of the gap created by your missing tooth.
- The downside of these bridges is that your adjacent teeth need to be trimmed down a lot to make room for the crowns.
Cantilever Dental Bridges
- Used to replace only a single missing tooth.
- These are similar to traditional bridges, but the pontic is supported by a crown on only one side.
- The pontic is attached to one tooth and then hangs over.
- So, if there is only one natural tooth next to the gap, a bridge can still be secured.
- These are not recommended in the back of the mouth as they cannot bear the full force of a patient’s bite, and might fracture.
Maryland Dental Bridges
- Also called resin-bonded bridges.
- Typically, used to replace front teeth.
- A pontic is held in place by a metal or porcelain framework. This framework is bonded onto the backs of the two teeth adjacent to the missing tooth.
- Tooth preparation of adjacent teeth is less.
- The strength of the bridge is limited by the strength of the resin that holds it in place; It is not recommended for the back of the mouth.
Implant-supported Dental Bridges
- Considered the strongest and most stable type of dental bridge.
- It is recommended when a patient has more than one tooth missing.
- Dental implants as used to support bridges instead of adjacent teeth.
- In general, one implant is surgically placed for every missing tooth. If one implant for each missing tooth isn’t possible, the bridge may have a pontic suspended between two implant-supported crowns.
Procedure to Get a Dental Bridge
- Tooth Preparation: Adjacent teeth are re-contoured. This allows room for a crown to be placed over them.
- Impressions: Models of the teeth are made. These serve as molds from which a dental lab makes the bridge.
- Temporary Bridge: Dentist will fix a temporary bridge on the prepared teeth.
- Removal of the temporary bridge.
- The permanent bridge is then put. It is followed by adjustment to achieve a proper fit.
- Recall visit may be required to check the fit of the framework and bite. This varies depending on each patient’s case.
- If it is a fixed bridge, your dentist may temporarily cement it in place for a few days to ensure a good fit. Once you are satisfied with the fit, the bridge is cemented into place.
Dental Bridge Vs Dental Implant
To replace missing teeth, you can either get a dental bridge or you can opt for dental implants. Which treatment is right for you? Let’s take a look.
|Basis of Comparison||Dental Bridges||Dental Implants|
|Time||Can be done in a single visit.||Second visit is required.|
|Tooth Preparation||Adjacent teeth are trimmed, affects their strength||No impact on surrounding teeth.|
|Longevity||Need to be replaced after 10-15 years.||With proper care, last a lifetime.|
How Much Does a Dental Bridge Cost ?
The cost of your bridges varies by the material used, the number of missing teeth, and the country you are getting the procedure done.
|Country||Regular Bridge||Implant Supported|
|New Zealand||$2,738||$8,215 onwards|
A traditional 3-unit bridge which costs around $2,000 in the U.S. and $2,738 in New Zealand, starts at only $300 in Mexico and Costa Rica.
Along with the advantage of an overseas holiday, these destinations provide affordable dental treatments.
Dental Bridges FAQs
1. Will I have trouble eating with a dental bridge?
Adjusting to your bridge might take a few days. Until you become accustomed to the bridge, eat soft foods and take small bites.
2. Will the dental bridge impact my speech?
The dental bridge does not impact your speech, although a little adjustment time may be needed.
3. What are the disadvantages of dental bridges?
For a bridge, the structure of the adjacent teeth must be trimmed.
In the case of healthy teeth, the idea of cutting them down to prepare for a bridge is not ideal.
In such cases, dental implants are an excellent alternative.
4. How many teeth can a dental bridge replace?
A dental bridge can be used to fill gaps between a few to several missing teeth.
Long-span traditional bridges are not preferred for patients with several missing teeth.
It is recommended that they opt for the implant-supported bridges.
5. How do I care for a dental bridge?
For bridges that last for a long time, brush your teeth twice a day. Floss daily to help prevent tooth decay and gum disease.
Keep a balanced and nutritious diet.
Visit your dentist every 6 months for a checkup.
We offer low-cost dental bridges abroad for people without dental insurance. Contact us now for more information!