When trying to decide on a dental replacement, sometimes there are decisions that need to be made even after you've decided what you want. One of these cases might happen to you with dental bridges, as there are multiple kinds. If you've heard that some people get bridges over a crown while others get them over an implant, you might be wondering which one is right for your needs. Here's a simple guide to break it down for you.
In the old days, dental bridges were connected to individual teeth on either side of the gap. While real teeth provided good support, it could cause damage over a long period of time, so it's typically no longer the norm. This is why crown bridges are utilized instead.
A crown bridge is a good choice if you have some of your teeth remaining and they're healthy and strong. The crown is just there to take up the brunt of the force on the bridge for your tooth so that it doesn't experience any negative impacts. This is a safe and effective way of providing you with a bridge.
Dental implants are sometimes used to anchor bridges instead of real teeth covered with crowns.
There are a few reasons why you might want to choose a dental implant bridge instead of one using crowns. For example, if you're missing too many teeth to use a crown, getting one to two dental implants can change that. This prevents you from needing a full set of dental implants and provides you with a strong pair of anchors for your new dental bridge.
Another option is that you have your teeth but that they're not in the greatest health, either due to problems with the teeth themselves or your gums. In this case, you would have the option of either pulling the teeth and replacing them with dental implants, or you could have dental implants put in next to them to act as the bridge anchor instead of your real teeth.
What to Expect
Getting a bridge on its own isn't a big deal. Your dentist will take a measurement of your teeth and a series of x-rays so that they can custom-order a dental bridge that's made just for you. When it's ready, your dentist will be able to put it in immediately, providing that the prep work has already been done.
What that prep work is will depend upon whether you choose a crown or implant bridge. Crowns are easy to apply and can even be put in place the same day you get your bridge. However, dental implants take time to heal and fuse to your jawbones, so you may have to wait longer to get a dental bridge if you choose the implant route and don't already have implants.