Replacing missing teeth is about more than improving your smile; it’s a vital step to preserving your oral health. The experienced MediDental Care dental team in Queens offers several options to replace missing teeth including dental bridges and implants. If you’re looking for high-quality and advanced dental solutions in Astoria, New York, call MediDental Care or schedule an appointment online today.
A dental bridge is a dental prosthesis that sits on the teeth and closes a tooth gap. It is comparable to a wooden walkway. The natural teeth on the right and left of the gap serve as pillars. The crown anchors of the dental bridge are attached to these so-called abutment teeth. Such a dental bridge is anchored to the two adjacent teeth or glued to it with composite cement and an artificial tooth is inserted in the tooth gap.
Dental bridges are a good alternative to dental implants, especially for teeth with a crown or teeth that need to be crowned next to a tooth gap. A bridge can close teeth gaps with up to 4 missing teeth. The lifespan of a dental bridge ranges from 10 years to 20 years with good dental hygiene and regular tooth cleaning.
The condition of the abutment teeth determines which type of dental bridge is suitable. Before the actual treatment, the patient's bridge piers are prepared under local anesthesia. To do this, the teeth are freed of caries and existing old fillings removed.
Tooth gaps near a tooth nerve are covered with a special material. Then the actual preparation of the abutment teeth takes place. These have to be aligned in parallel since the bridge is made of one piece. Now the suitable abutment teeth are ground, impressions are taken, the tooth color determined and the tooth gap provided with a temporary tooth bridge. After this treatment, the laboratory can fabricate the individual bridge framework. This is tried in the mouth before the bridge is completed in one piece in the laboratory.
During the fitting, the height of the dental bridge, the accuracy of fit, the absence of tension, the direction of insertion and the aesthetic correctness are checked. The bridge will then be used in further sessions. Once all residual stresses have been removed, the large bridges can definitely be integrated. This procedure can take place under local anesthesia if the patient so wishes. It controls the direction of insertion and aesthetic correctness.
Dental bridges are made of a wide variety of materials and in different designs. Basically, there are precious metal-containing, non-precious metal (ceramic) and mixed materials (ceramic and metal).
Full cast bridge is a metal bridge manufactured using the casting process. It can be made from precious metal (gold alloys) and non-precious metal. Non-precious metal is cheaper but should be used for aesthetic reasons in the non-visible dentition area.
An all-ceramic bridge is made of ceramic (non-precious metal) materials. Precious metal-free materials can be Cerec, pressed ceramics and zirconium oxide ceramics. Cerec is calculated and milled by the computer, pressed ceramics are liquefied and pressed into shape, and zirconium oxide ceramics are all-ceramic made in the dental laboratory.
Ceramic dental bridges are particularly compatible and look very natural. There is also the veneer dental bridge. Here, a tooth-colored veneer made of plastic or ceramic is applied to a metal frame (metal or precious metal). This veneer dental bridge can be designed as a full or partial veneer.
If teeth are missing, a dental bridge can fill the gaps. A temporary restoration is often used until the definitive dental bridge is made. Temporary dental bridges are made of simple plastic and are used immediately after the preparation of the abutment teeth. However, these temporary bridges must be handled carefully so that they do not fall out prematurely.
If the number of teeth is greatly reduced, the neighboring teeth and gums often have to be restored. This often takes a long time. Therefore, a dental bridge is used as a long-term temporary. This consists of a metal frame so that the tooth gap and the treated gums remain sufficiently stable until the actual treatment.
If the natural teeth are healthy and stable in the jaw, a fixed bridge can be used. Fixed bridges only require one crown per pillar tooth, are firmly glued in and cannot be removed. Spans of up to 3 adjacent missing teeth in the posterior region and 4 missing teeth in the anterior region can be bridged.
If rows of teeth are interrupted by missing teeth, there is a shift gap. Here a switching bridge is used for correction. This consists of 2 interconnected, crowned teeth that support pontics and replace missing teeth. As many pillar teeth as possible should be available so that the switching bridge is stable.
If at least 5 natural teeth remain after a tooth loss, but they are not in good condition, a telescopic bridge is used. The telescopic bridge is a combination of a fixed bridge and a removable partial denture. For this purpose, the damaged teeth are topped with gold and the visible crowns are worked into a removable bridge.
If several teeth are missing in a row, an implant bridge can be placed on the dental implants fixed in the jaw. There is the pure implant bridge and the composite bridge, in which your own teeth are used as pillars for stabilization. The implant bridge often consists of mixed materials (ceramic and precious metal).
The combination bridge is used for large tooth gaps if a denture can be inserted between natural teeth and an existing dental implant. A combination bridge is manufactured to be stuck or partially removable.
The adhesive bridge is a fixed dental prosthesis and is used for teeth that are not fitted or for tooth loss. The adhesive bridge consists of a metal frame or a ceramic frame and is attached to the enamel of the abutment teeth using a fastening plastic.
If the last tooth of the row of teeth is missing, the two teeth are crowned and connected to each other before the gap. This means that the replacement tooth is only held on one side. For this reason, the bridge is less stable. This is only recommended if the crown of the abutment teeth can withstand the load.
Here the dental bridge is only attached to two inlays of the neighboring teeth. This procedure is gentle on the teeth, but leads to detachment of the inlays in the medium term and is therefore rarely practiced.
There are a few preparatory measures before inserting the dental bridge:
The following measures are important for a long life of the dental bridges:
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