Bridges

When you lose a tooth, it affects not just the appearance, but the function of your smile.

  • It can be difficult to eat or speak naturally
  • Extra stress is put on your remaining teeth
  • You’re at greater risk for developing gum disease
  • Your remaining teeth can shift out of position, causing bite problems
  • The shape of your face and jaw can change over time

A bridge is a restoration that will help you maintain your oral health while making your smile complete again.

Bridges use prosthetic teeth to “bridge” the gaps caused by missing teeth. These false teeth are known as pontics, and are crafted from metal, porcelain, or porcelain fused to metal. Pontics can be matched in size, shape, and color to the teeth they are replacing for a natural appearance. A bridge can replace up to four teeth but is typically used to replace one or two.

There are four common types of bridges and the type of bridge that is best for you will depend on your preferences, your oral health, the location and number of missing teeth, cost, and other factors. Because a bridge requires healthy teeth, gums, and bones for long-lasting and successful restoration, any dental problems will need to be treated beforehand.

Traditional Bridge

Dental bridgeTraditional bridges are fixed in place and are anchored by crowns placed on the healthy teeth on each side of the gap. First, the two supporting teeth, known as abutment teeth, are prepared for crowns. This requires removing part of the tooth structure and creating an impression of each tooth. Crowns are created from these impressions and are attached on each side of the artificial tooth, creating the bridge. The crowns are then cemented to the prepared teeth, securing the entire bridge unit in place.

Cantilever Bridge

cantilever bridgeA cantilever bridge is used when there aren’t teeth available on both sides of the missing tooth to serve as abutment teeth. In this case, a healthy tooth on one side of the gap can be fitted with a crown to hold a single pontic. Because the pontic is only attached on one side, cantilever bridges aren’t recommended for the rear of the jaw, where chewing forces are much more powerful and the extra stress can damage the abutment tooth over time.

Maryland Bridge

maryland bridge

A Maryland bridge is a more conservative treatment than a traditional bridge because there is no need for crowns to hold the bridge in place. A pontic is created with two wings made of resin, porcelain, or metal attached to its back. These wings are then bonded to the backs of the two abutment teeth. This type of fixed bridge is often used to replace one or two front teeth; it’s not strong enough to replace molars. Because no crowns are necessary, a Maryland bridge is generally more cost effective than other options.

Implant-Supported Bridge

implant bridgeAn implant-supported bridge is a bridge attached to dental implants. Posts are surgically implanted in the jawbone, and, over a period of months, fuse with the bone, providing an exceptionally strong foundation for a bridge. The number of implants needed will depend on the location of the bridge (upper or lower jaw), the number of pontics, and the quantity and density of the bone.

Once the implant posts have healed and are well-integrated into the jawbone, metal or ceramic abutments are secured to the posts. The bridge is then secured to these abutments. The bridge can be fixed or removable for easier cleaning.

While this type of bridge is often the most expensive option, implant-supported bridges help protect jawbone health. Without the stimulation of biting and chewing, the bone ridge under a missing tooth begins to lose density and shrink. Implants stimulate bone tissue just as natural teeth do to preserve bone strength and density.

You have many options for replacing a lost tooth. Your dentist can help you determine which type of bridge is best suited to restore your healthy, confident smile.

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Tuesday:

8:30 am-3:00 pm

Wednesday:

8:30 am-3:00 pm

Thursday:

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What Our Clients Say About Us

    From start to finish, a great experience! Nice clean office. The front desk staff was friendly, on the way in & on the way out. My hygienist was absolutely amazing, she was sweet and gentle, she asked questions, and gave advice. Dr Wanat was professional and let me know what was necessary and didn’t try to have me come in for a bunch of unnecessary work, I was extremely pleased with my visit as a new patient.

    Jamie Rosen

    I am 71 years old and I have been to many different dentists over the years. Dr. Wanat is kind, compassionate and gentle. I would highly recommend him for your dental care. Maria is also kind, compassionate and gentle. They went above and beyond to accommodate my needs. They were a blessing to me!

    Deborah Nixon

    I am a new patient this week. I was pleasantly greeted and all the staff were very friendly. They were all exceptional in explaining my care. Dr. Wanat was also excellent explaining my options for a dental care plan. I had all my x-rays and a cleaning today. I look forward to begin next week starting the plan we have in place.

    Robert Harris

    My husband and I both very happy with this dentist. All of the young ladies that work there are super. They know their job and make you feel special. Dr. Want does not do any procedure that is not needed. He is the best dentist I have ever had!!!

    Anita Gray

    The dental hygienist Amber was very attentive and caring during my initial visit. She was also very proficient with reviewing my x-rays and providing both helpful and practical feedback/recommendations for ways to improve my dental cleaning routine at home. Dr. Wanat was friendly and honest, and he seemed genuinely invested in addressing my concerns. He and Amber also thoroughly explained the plans for my future visits. The office manager was very friendly and accommodating with scheduling as well.

    Jennifer Lassonde