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Let us help you restore your smile with a dental bridge.

If you lose a tooth, a bridge may be needed to support one or more crowns and fill the gap left behind. A dental bridge can replace one missing tooth or a row of missing teeth, effectively “bridging the gap” in your smile.

Dental bridges are created based on the patients’ needs and usually consist of an artificial tooth that permanently fills a gap. This is then attached to crowns that are fitted over your adjacent healthy teeth effectively locking it into position.

Dental bridges particularly relevant for individuals who are susceptible to gum disease or those who wish to replace a front tooth for cosmetic purposes. Dental bridges offer a durable and tailored solution that seamlessly blends with your natural teeth to help restore a natural looking smile.

Why would I need a dental bridge?

A dental bridge helps restore chewing function, prevents teeth from moving or shifting out of place, enhances your appearance, and improve your oral health. More important, though, your dental health is likely to suffer when teeth are not replaced.

A bridge also helps maintain the natural shape of your face and support your lips and cheeks. The loss of a tooth may cause your mouth to sink, inhibit your ability to speak, or age your face prematurely.

The following are the most common reasons we see at Tea Tree Dental why patients consider bridges:

Improve the ability to chew food

Gaps in your teeth cause issues when chewing food and subsequent digestion. Not only that but the gum where the tooth was left exposed can become infected without a barrier between it and the foods you eat.

Improvements in speech

Gaps in your teeth can lead to lisps or other speech impediments. Where you have developed a style and pattern of speaking, a sudden loss of a tooth can significantly affect your speech. Rectifying these gaps as soon as possible enables you to return to your original speech pattern.

Remove gaps

Significant visible gaps when talking, eating, or smiling can affect your confidence. You may think that if the missing tooth is in the back of your mouth that no one will notice. However, when you speak, laugh, or chew, unfortunately it’s noticeable. Where the tooth has been lost entirely, a bridge can be the only long-term solution to restore your smile.

Face shape

Missing teeth in your jaw can significantly affect the shape of your face, smile, and bone loss from the jaw. A large gap in your teeth, if not addressed, can also allow your other teeth to move out of alignment, affecting your ability to chew food as well as your speech.
dental bridge fitted
dental bridge inspection
Dental bridge of 3 teeth
Dental bridge of 2 teeth over premolar

Types of dental bridges

There are different types of bridges available which include traditional bridges, Maryland bridges, cantilever bridges, and implant-supported bridges. These bridge types offer patients a variety of options, depending on their specific condition.

Traditional dental bridge

This is the most common type of dental bridge. It consists of dental crowns on both ends with artificial teeth in between. A dentist bonds the crowns to your natural teeth on either side of the gap, and the artificial teeth fill in the space between. We at Tea Tree Dental prefer to use traditional dental bridges when you have healthy natural teeth on both sides of the gap.

Maryland dental bridge

A Maryland bridge, or resin-bonded bridge, uses metal wings instead of crowns to secure your bridge. A dentist bonds the wings to the backs of your adjacent teeth to hold your bridge in place. Dentists typically use Maryland bridges to replace front teeth because this application isn’t strong enough to withstand the chewing forces back teeth endure.

Cantilever dental bridge

A cantilever bridge is similar to a traditional bridge, but there’s only a crown on one end, not both. When your dentist bonds the bridge onto your supporting tooth, the artificial tooth extends across the gap, filling it. We use cantilever bridges when you only have natural teeth on one side of the gap. Unfortunately, due to their design, cantilever bridges aren’t as strong as traditional bridges.

Implant-supported bridge

An implant-supported bridge is similar to a traditional bridge, but it rests atop dental implants instead of natural teeth. Dental implants are small threaded posts that replace missing teeth roots. Before attaching a bridge to dental implants, your implants must fully integrate (fuse) with your jawbone. This process takes three to six months on average, but it can take longer depending on your situation. Dentists can use implant-supported bridges when you have three or more missing teeth in a row.

Although there are variances between the dental bridges, they are generally strong and reliable. When produced correctly, they can match the feel and appearance of the natural teeth closely.

The process of having a bridge placed

Like the other procedures we’ve discussed, a bridge is not generally completed in one day. The process of fitting a dental bridge also varies with the type of bridge Tea Tree Dental recommends. Depending on where the gap is, our dentist will need to assess the strength of the teeth on either side of the gap to ensure they are stable enough to support the bridge, and they will probably use X-rays to do this.

Once our dentist has determined the process is possible, the teeth on either side will be filed to accommodate the crowns that will keep the false tooth stable, and then your dentist will design a mould for the entire bridge.

When the mould is ready, you will return for a second appointment to cement the bridge securely in place.

Test fitting dental bridge

A bridge serves a specific purpose so to ensure it is right for your unique situation, always make sure to schedule a time to speak with us at Tea Tree Dental.