Dental Bridge Types: How Many Teeth Are Needed for a Bridge?

Dental Bridge Types: How Many Teeth Are Needed for a Bridge?

Aug 01, 2023

An Overview of Dental Bridges

They are oral appliances that dentists in Tara Dental Group employ for replacing missing teeth. A dental bridge features one or more artificial replacement teeth called pontics. The pontics fill the gaps of the lost teeth. However, for the treatment to work, the pontics must be supported by the adjacent teeth using a different component, usually a dental crown. However, the types of dental bridges near you differ, usually based on the elements comprising the bridgework.

Types of Dental Bridges in Restorative Dentistry

The components of a dental bridge are crucial for bridging the gap between two healthy teeth or dental implants. The differences in the parts make for different bridge types, including the following:

  • Traditional Dental Bridge is the most common type of bridgework, consisting of one or more artificial teeth. These pontics are held in place by two dental crowns placed on the adjacent healthy teeth, known as abutment teeth. The crowns are cemented onto one abutment tooth on each side of the existing gap, providing support and stability to the bridge. The key component in a traditional dental bridge is two dental crowns.
  • Maryland Bonded Bridge – is also known as a resin-bonded bridge. This bridgework is primarily useful for replacing front teeth. It features a pontic supported by a framework of metal or porcelain attached behind the surfaces of the adjacent natural teeth. The bridgework also needs support from two adjacent teeth to stabilize it. However, unlike traditional bridges, Maryland bonded bridges do not require dental crowns on the abutment teeth. The metal or porcelain framework will replace the dental crowns supporting artificial teeth.
  • Cantilever Bridge is much like a traditional bridge, only requiring a single healthy tooth as an abutment. A cantilever bridgework employs one dental crown to support the pontic. Dentists use this bridgework when there is only one healthy adjacent tooth to support the dental bridge. Therefore, support is only on one side while the other is unsupported.
  • Implant-Supported bridge – is a dental bridge supported by dental implants rather than natural teeth. The treatment is essential for patients with multiple missing teeth in a row with insufficient natural support in the jawbone. In such cases, dentists surgically place dental implants into the jawbone and then attach the bridge to the implants using abutments. Implant-supported bridges are a durable and stable option for replacing multiple missing teeth, usually more than three teeth in a row.

How Many Teeth Do Bridges Replace?

​Dental bridges in Bellaire, TX, are popular for replacing one missing tooth at a time. However, a bridgework can replace up to 3 missing teeth in a row. A dentist near you will discourage having a dental bridge with many artificial teeth since it weakens the structure. Therefore, even when you get a bridgework with three artificial teeth, it should feature two dental crowns on both sides to offer more support. Patients who get dental bridges with multiple artificial teeth need traditional dental bridges.

Which Dental Bridge is the Best?

Each type of dental bridge has its advantages and considerations. Therefore, the choice of a bridge depends on various factors, such as:

  • The location of the missing teeth
  • The health and strength of the adjacent teeth
  • Your initial oral health condition
  • Your specific needs and preferences.

These are factors that your dentist will consider before treatment. However, if you want to have an input in choosing the best bridgework for your smile, consider the following factors:

  • Durability and longevity – some dental bridges, like implant-supported or traditional bridges, are more durable than their counterparts.
  • Timeline of treatment – the timeline for implant-supported bridges is longer than all other bridges because of the period necessary to install and heal from implantation surgery.
  • Sturdiness of bridgework – the more support there is, the stronger and more stable a bridgework will be. Therefore, traditional bridges prove stronger and more stable than Maryland bridges or Cantilever bridges.
  • The ability to restore many teeth at once – consider traditional bridges or implant-supported ones for multiple tooth replacements.

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