Types of Dental Bridges: An Overview of Different Options

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A dental bridge is a prosthesis used to fill the space of one or more missing teeth. It is cemented in place and is made from a variety of materials, including metal, ceramic, and plastic. If you plan to get dental bridges, it helps to know the different types to choose what suits your condition.

Do Dental Bridges Come in a Variety of Types?

There are four common types of bridges, such as:

  • Traditional Dental Bridge

This is the most popular type of bridge. It consists of two crowns placed on the teeth on either side of the space, called abutment teeth, with a false or filler tooth in between, called a pontic. Traditional bridges are usually used when the surrounding teeth are strong and healthy enough to support the restoration.

  • Cantilever Dental Bridge

This type of bridge is used when abutment teeth are only on one side of the empty space. It consists of one or more false teeth attached to an abutment tooth on just one side. Since cantilever bridges are supported only on one side, they are often used to replace a missing front tooth where the biting force is not too high. They are typically made of ceramic, metal, or a combination of both.

  • Maryland or Resin-Bonded Bridge

Also known as a resin-bonded bridge, it uses metal bands bonded to the back of the abutment teeth. The pontic is then attached to the metal band. Unlike the traditional bridge, a Maryland bridge doesn’t require your dentist to reduce the structure of your natural teeth.

  • Implant-Supported Dental Bridge

This type of bridge uses one or more implants surgically placed in the jawbone to support the pontic teeth. It is a good option for people who do not have enough healthy abutment teeth to support a traditional bridge.

What Is the Difference in Cost Between Dental Bridges?

While the price of dental bridges depends on many factors, including your dentist, the materials used, and whether your insurance covers it, the types of bridges you require also play a big part in your total expenses. Sometimes, dental issues can be a factor since your dentist needs to perform additional treatments. For instance, if you have gum disease, your dentist must manage it first before placing a bridge, which adds to the overall cost.

Here’s how much you can expect to pay for each type of dental bridge, on average:

  • Traditional dental bridge: At least $1,800 per tooth
  • Cantilever dental bridge with a crown: At least $4,540
  • Implant-supported dental bridge: It may range between $6,700 to $20,500, with two implants spanning three or four teeth

Note that these are just estimates, and your actual costs may be higher or lower.

dental implants procedure


Is There a Dental Bridge That’s Right for Me?

Your dentist will help you choose the dental bridge type that will suit your needs, depending on factors such as the location of your missing tooth or teeth, the health of your gums and jawbone, and your budget.

For example, if you’re only missing a single tooth, cantilever bridges may be what you need. However, you’ll likely need a traditional bridge if you’re missing multiple teeth in a row. An implant-supported denture may be better if you are missing all teeth in your upper or lower jaw. No matter what type of dental bridge you choose, practising good oral hygiene is essential to keep your mouth healthy and prevent complications.

Final Thoughts

A dental bridge is a prosthesis used to fill the space of one or more missing teeth. It is fixed in place and has four common types: traditional, cantilever, Maryland or resin-bonded, and implant-supported bridge. If you are considering getting this treatment, it is always a good idea to be aware of the different types of bridges to decide which one addresses your situation.

Byford Smiles has a team of dentists with years of experience performing dental bridge procedures. They will take time to discuss the procedure and its types with you to help you make an informed decision about your dental health. Based on every patient’s case, they will develop a personalised treatment plan that meets your specific needs. Our clinic is equipped with modern dental technology to ensure that you receive efficient and positive outcomes. Contact us now to book an appointment so we can assess your current oral health and give you a more accurate estimate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Dental bridges have several advantages, including restoring your smile and teeth’s functions. When you have tooth gaps caused by tooth loss, eating and speaking can be difficult. Dental bridges help fill these gaps so you can smile more often and chew, bite, and speak properly. Also, having a missing tooth can make your face look sunken, but bridges can help fill out the appearance of your face. In addition, your other teeth can shift when you have a missing tooth.

There are no special measures for dental bridges, but you should take proper care to clean them. This includes brushing your teeth at least twice a day, flossing daily, and using an antibacterial mouthwash to avoid tooth decay. Use an interdental brush to clean the abutment teeth. You should also visit your dentist regularly to have professional checkups and cleanings. In addition, avoid hard and sticky foods and chewing on ice. If you can, avoid smoking or at least limit it as much as possible.

During your appointment, your dentist will first numb your gums using local anaesthesia. Next, they will prepare the adjacent healthy teeth by removing a portion of the enamel. This is necessary to make room for the dental crowns that will be placed on top of these teeth. Once the abutment teeth are prepared, your dentist will take an impression or dental scan of your mouth. This is used to create the dental bridge, which will be made from either porcelain or ceramic.

It usually takes two to three weeks for the dental bridge to be ready. In the meantime, your dentist may place a temporary dental bridge to protect your exposed teeth. Your next appointment will be the bridge placement. The temporary bridge will be removed, and your dentist will replace it with the custom-made bridge. Before you leave the clinic, your dentist will give certain instructions on caring for your new dental bridge to maintain its lifespan and avoid complications.

There are two alternatives to a dental bridge, dentures and dental implants. Dentures are recommended if you are missing all your teeth in a single arch and are looking for a more affordable prosthesis. Dental implants are a more expensive tooth replacement option but are more durable and look more natural. These consists of titanium posts surgically placed on your jawbone to act as artificial tooth roots. Once the implants have healed, artificial teeth are then attached to them. Dental implants are not recommended if you have weak or insufficient jaw bones, can’t commit to practising good dental hygiene, or are a smoker.

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