If you are missing one or more teeth, Dr. Russell Cannon may suggest a dental bridge as one option to replace those missing teeth and restore your chewing ability and your smile. Although our first choice is to replace teeth with implants, various circumstances may change our recommendation. If we decide a dental (permanently attached) bridge will serve you best, viewing the video below this text will give you a great overview.

SO WHAT IS A BRIDGE?

A dental bridge is often called a fixed partial denture in Irvine, California. A part of your dental arch is thus restored with this permanently attached appliance. Dr. Russell Cannon and his team can make traditional, cantilever, resin-bonded and implant retained bridges. The bridge consists of anchors and pontics that are fused into a single restoration. Pontics look like natural teeth that are suspended and designed to rest lightly on the gum tissue where there are missing teeth. The anchors or abutments are crowned natural teeth or implants.

WHAT IS A TRADITIONAL BRIDGE?

Dr. Russell Cannon and his team in Irvine, California, have found this type of bridge to function and last a long time in most mouths. It consists of an abutment on each end of the bridge with a pontic or pontics in the middle. Dr. Russell Cannon must shape the teeth on each side of the missing tooth or teeth so they can accept crown restorations. In some cases, there may already be crowns on these abutment teeth. In those cases, existing crowns are removed so that a one-piece bridge can be made. In other cases, the abutment teeth have old large filling restorations and decay issues that would have required crowns anyway. Our Irvine dentist encourages replacement of a single missing tooth that has good sound teeth adjacent to it, with an implant because one can floss it and care for it easier than a traditional bridge.

WHAT IS A CANTILEVER BRIDGE?

Cantilever bridges can be great in some selective applications. They consist of single or multiple abutments on only one side of a missing tooth. Dr. Russell Cannon and his team in Irvine, California, have the experience to know when this can work well. They are mostly reserved for the front half of the mouth as the occlusal biting forces are too strong in the back half of the jaw for this type of bridge.

WHAT IS A RESIN-BONDED OR MARYLAND BRIDGE?

Dr. Russell Cannon has found selective applications for this type of bridge that does not use crowns for abutments. The abutments or anchors that suspend the pontic or pontics are metal or resin wings that can be bonded to the tongue side of teeth adjacent to the missing tooth or teeth. The biggest criteria that our dentist evaluates is whether or not the patient grinds, clenches or bruxes his or her teeth. Our Irvine dentist also needs a sound enamel surface to bond to. We found this bridge to act as a long-term temporary solution. The resin bonded bridge can be ideal in a situation where the patient is not financially prepared for an implant or traditional bridge at the time of placement.

WHAT IS AN IMPLANT-RETAINED BRIDGE?

When Dr. Russell Cannon and his dental team find multiple missing teeth spanning part of the dental arch in a patient, we often suggest implant-supported or retained bridge work. Basically, it is a bridge supported by implant abutments instead of natural teeth. It works well because the esthetics is often better than we can achieve with individual implants. When a dentist places implants next to implants it is almost impossible to get the pink triangular tissue between them to look like what we see in the natural dentition. This is only a concern in the front of the mouth. If we use implant-retained bridges in the back of the mouth, it helps reduce overall costs to the patient because we use less implants.

Modern bridges are constantly getting stronger and more aesthetic. They are requiring more attention to clean around the pontic and abutments. Some of Dr. Russell Cannon’s fixed bridges are in good shape after 25 years in his patients with excellent home care. If you would like to learn more about our dental bridges and how they can benefit your smile, please contact us today! We have experienced staff that would be happy to answer all your questions in our Irvine dental practice.