When getting replacement teeth, it is safe to assume that you want it to look and function as natural as possible, including wanting them to last long enough like the real thing. However, is it possible for a dental bridge? If not, how long does a dental bridge last?
In this article, we will discuss every possible question you have in mind. We will also discuss some dental care tips to maximize the purpose of your dental bridges and how long you can extend its lifespan.
What Is A Dental Bridge?
Are you having problems with your missing teeth? Your dentist may recommend you to get a dental bridge. It is one of the highly chosen cosmetic dental procedures that allow a quick and relatively easy teeth replacement process. For you to get back and restore your youthful smile, the bridge must fit properly and last long enough to serve its purpose.
As an alternative to your missing teeth, a dental bridge helps improve the appearance of your smile and prevents misalignment. When a gap is present, there is a huge possibility for the surrounding teeth to move between spaces. A semi-permanent dental bridge replaces the missing teeth, which ultimately stops the neighboring teeth from shifting.
What Are the Different Types of Dental Bridges?
Dental bridges are present in two forms. One is a removable bridge while the other is a fixed bridge.
A removable bridge consists of crowns on its ends which clips onto the existing teeth. Many people choose removable bridges over the fixed one because it comes at a lower price. Aside from being a temporary replacement for missing teeth, it does not require any surgeries at all. Often, a dental professional will only file down the existing teeth to allow the crown and cap to stick correctly. Removable bridges require constant cleaning so you’ll need to take it out every day.
Two types of fixed bridges are available. The first one caps from a supporting tooth that is slightly similar to that of a removable bridge, only it is cemented in place. Meanwhile, the second kind of a fixed bridge is permanently attached to an actual dental implant. Because it connects with tight screws or abutments, this type is more stable yet requires more intensive oral hygiene maintenance.
Are Dental Bridges Permanent?
Dental bridges are not permanent, just like any dental work. However, there is a much higher chance of extending its longevity when a professional with high-quality skills and expertise carries out the bridgework. According to some studies, long-term survival of dental restoration lies within the dental practice itself. It is one of the most critical factors that determine the outcome and success of treatments.
How Long Does A Dental Bridge Last?
A dental bridge is like a dental implant. It uses a fake tooth that is made out of porcelain and attaches with the help of crowns, cement, or caps. In cases where there is no sign of healthy neighboring teeth, the dentist will opt for surgical methods to create anchor implants. This technique involves securing the dental implant into the gumline using screws.
Your dental bridge’s lifespan also depends on your dental care techniques, diet, and daily routine. According to some experts, a dental bridge typically lasts from at least five years up to seven years. However, regular visits to your dentists and practising good oral hygiene can extend it up to over ten years.
How Often Do Dental Bridges Get Replaced?
Typically, you have to wait for some time before you can replace your dental bridges. Since a dental bridge can last for more than a decade, you would only need maintenance care from time to time.
Simple repairs for minor wear and tear like a chip in the bridge is typical. However, if you have uncontrollable habits such as nail-biting, chewing solid materials, and using your teeth to cut items, you need to let your dentist know. These habits apply an excessive amount of force to the edges of your dental bridge, which may lead to severe concerns like total chipping, fractures, and gum problems.
What Are the Factors that Influence the Lifespan of a Dental Bridge?
Several factors affect the longevity and survival of dental bridges. Below is a list of the most common reasons for a dental bridge to vary its lifespan.
- Specific skills and expertise of the dentist or dental technician who performs the restoration and treatment procedures.
- The current condition of the supporting teeth.
- Overall dental condition and oral hygiene of the patient.
- Patient demographics, particularly the age when the dental bridge become present.
- Frequency of maintenance care and attendance to dental visits.
- Type of restoration, whether initial or replacement.
How Can I Avoid Dental Bridge Problems?
It is essential to take care of your dental bridges if you want to maintain your smile up to its maximum lifeline. Preventive actions are better than fixing problems to protect your teeth in the long run. Here are some care tips that you should take note of.
Make sure that your bridge fits perfectly
After your dentist finishes the installation, you should double-check and be certain that the bridge fits correctly. An excellent fitting dental bridge should flush against your gumline. By doing so, you can prevent leftover food from getting caught in-between spaces. Ill-fitting bridges can also harbor bacteria and plaque, leading to gum disease and bad breath.
Avoid chewing on hard and sticky food
Dental bridges are not as strong as your natural teeth. Your dentist might discuss some types of food that you should refrain from chewing. Hard and sticky food such as ice, chewable candies, and raw vegetables are only some examples of food that may dislodge your dental bridge. Chewing these kinds of food can bring intense damage to your bridge’s structure that you might need to replace it. Skipping hard and sticky food is one of the most straightforward dental bridge problems that you can avoid if you don’t want to spend money on replacing your dental bridges.
Practise good oral hygiene
Having good oral hygiene will not only prevent bacteria from forming, but it is also responsible for removing calculus, tartar, and plaque. With as easy as brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily, you can extend the life of your dental bridge and avoid other dental problems from occurring.
If you want to step-up your oral care routine, try to incorporate an antiseptic mouthwash or use a water pick for a deeper, more intense cleaning.
Regular visits to the dentist
Schedule your dentists’ appointment on a timely basis so you won’t forget to pay your visit now and then. Regular check-ups and cleaning will not only maintain your dental bridges but will also prevent other problems from arising. Routine check-ups will allow your dentist to make sure that your dental bridges are intact. At the same time, he or she will be able to check for any arising problems.
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Dental bridge: Everything you need to know. (Villines Z., 2019).