3 Facts About Dental Bridges: What They’re For, Alternative Solutions, and How They Work

Facts on dental bridges

Having missing teeth can lower your self-confidence and hinder your ability to talk or chew. A dental bridge is a common and effective option for replacing missing teeth and boosting self-esteem.

These tooth replacement options have been used for decades to restore the natural appearance and function of the mouth. If you are missing teeth and thinking about a dental bridge as a replacement, you should know a few things so you can make an educated decision.

What is a dental bridge, and what is it for?

A dental bridge is used to replace one or more missing teeth. This treatment option consists of artificial teeth supported by your remaining natural teeth or dental implants on both sides of the gap. However, this procedure typically only works when the teeth on each side are strong enough to support the restoration.

Why It’s Important to Replace Missing Teeth

Without a tooth replacement, you’ll begin noticing several issues. Complications of missing teeth include:

  • Bone loss
  • Bite issues
  • Shifting teeth 
  • Facial collapse 

Using a dental bridge as a replacement option can prevent these adverse side effects and maintain your beautiful smile.

Types of Dental Bridges 

There are three primary types of dental bridges. The first and most common type is a traditional bridge. This restoration procedure consists of two dental crowns and as many as three pontics, or fake teeth. A thin layer of the healthy teeth is shaved down to make room for the dental crown.

The second type is a cantilever bridge. It uses only one dental crown and up to three pontics and may be necessary when an adjacent tooth already has a crown or when it is more aesthetically pleasing.

The third type is an implant-supported bridge, which uses titanium posts for support instead of healthy teeth. It is the most durable and long-lasting option.

Benefits of a Dental Bridge

Numerous tooth replacement options exist, but there are some advantages to choosing a dental bridge. Aside from the implants needed for an implant-supported bridge, this procedure does not require surgery. Thus, it can be a quick and straightforward process that doesn’t require a lengthy healing period.

Many patients are concerned with how dental treatments affect their budget. A dental bridge is a more cost-friendly treatment option than implants, primarily because they do not require surgery.

In addition, a dental bridge is more secure than dentures. It will not move around or fall out while you are talking or eating. These restorations are securely attached to another tooth or implant and do not rely on the gums for retention. They also have a more realistic look than dentures.

Alternative Solutions to Dental Bridges

Dental bridges are a standard restorative dentistry practice in many offices. However, they are far from being the only option for replacing your missing teeth.


Dentures are removable appliances that can replace one or multiple missing teeth. Typically, they are made from acrylic resin, but they may contain metallic attachments for additional support. Depending on how many teeth need replacing, you can have a complete or partial denture.

Dental Implants

Dental implants are titanium screws surgically embedded into the jawbone. They offer patients a more permanent solution than a dental bridge and do not require support from healthy adjacent teeth. A denture or dental bridge can sit on top of an implant to replace missing teeth.

Hybrid Treatment

Dentures and implants have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages. The best option may be a combination of both procedures. A partial denture can fill a space that does not have good, healthy teeth to support a bridge, while a single implant can replace a missing tooth.

How a Dental Bridge Works

A dental bridge is custom-made to fit your mouth and involves two components: an abutment and pontics. The abutment teeth are healthy structures—whether natural teeth or implants—on both sides of the bridge that secure it in place. A pontic is a prosthetic tooth used to fill the space.

The procedure for a dental bridge involves two appointments with your University Park dentist. During the first appointment, the dentist prepares the abutment teeth by removing a thin layer of the natural tooth structure.

This removal creates room for the restoration to sit on top. Impressions of your teeth are necessary for creating a model of your mouth that will be used to create your artificial teeth. 

While your restoration is being made in a dental lab, you will wear a temporary bridge. Once your final bridge is ready, you will return for a second visit for a final fitting and permanent placement. Your dentist will then make the necessary adjustments to ensure a perfect, comfortable fit.

Restore your smile with a dental bridge.

Dental bridges are an effective solution for replacing missing teeth and restoring your ability to chew. Contact Dallas Cosmetic Dental to learn more about your missing tooth replacement options and request an appointment.