Types of Dental Bridge for the Front Teeth vs. Molars
If you are missing one or more consecutive teeth, a dental bridge is the traditional tooth-replacement solution. These restorations are held in place using adjacent natural teeth or with dental implants.
There are several different types of dental bridges available, depending on your unique oral health needs. Dr. Rob Zboril in Victoria, TX discusses dental bridges for front teeth vs. the molars to help patients understand the different applications for different bridge types.
Dental Bridges for Front Teeth
When replacing teeth in the front part of the mouth, or your smile zone, your restoration should provide optimal aesthetics. Besides looking natural, the front teeth do not withstand as much bite pressure as the molars, so the restorations do not need to have the same level of strength.
Dental bridge options for the front teeth include:
- Traditional bridges: These dental bridges consist of two dental crowns, attached to each tooth on the side of the gap. The pontics, or false teeth, are attached to the crowns, thereby filling in the gap.
- Cantilever bridges: These types of bridges are very similar to traditional bridges, but use one dental crown to secure the restoration, instead of two. The crown is supported by a natural tooth on one side of the gap and the pontic bridges the gap in your smile.
- Maryland bonded bridges: Your dentist may recommend this type of bridge if you are missing a single front tooth. Instead of cementing the bridge onto adjacent teeth, a Maryland bridge is held in place via the back of adjacent teeth with special resin wings. This has the benefit of not requiring alterations to the adjacent teeth, as is the case with traditional bridges. Generally speaking, Maryland bridges do not offer the stability or surface area of traditional bridges, and therefore are limited to single tooth replacement.
Dental Bridges for Molars
Patients with missing back teeth will almost always receive a traditional or implant-supported dental bridge. Molars exert and withstand significant bite force, as they are responsible for the majority of the chewing function.
As such, cantilever and Maryland bridges are not durable or strong enough to replace posterior teeth.
The most durable, lifelike, and stable option, an implant-supported bridge can be used to replace the front or back teeth. Rather than relying on natural teeth to anchor the bridge, these bridges are attached to implants, small titanium posts, that are surgically embedded in the jawbone and fuse with the surrounding hard tissues.
Since the implant is supported by the strength and power of the jawbone, this method of restoration retention provides decades, if not a lifetime, of reliable use.
To be receive dental implants, patients need dense, healthy jawbone tissue. During a consultation at our practice, Dr. Zboril can determine if an implant-supported bridge, or another type of restoration, is the best option for your needs.
Contact Our Practice Today
If you are missing teeth and are considering replacing them with a dental bridge, schedule a visit with Dr. Zboril. You can speak with a team member by calling us at (361) 550-7186 or filling out our online form.