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  • Writer's pictureSmile Stop Dentures and Implants

Missing Teeth? Exploring the World of Dental Bridges

A senior woman sits on the mat in a yoga class smiling at the camera..
Smile Stop Dentures & Implants discusses dental bridges.

A complete smile plays a significant role in our confidence and overall well-being. However, missing teeth can negatively impact both aesthetics and oral health. Fortunately, modern dentistry offers various solutions to replace missing teeth. One of the most popular options is dental bridges.

But what exactly are dental bridges, and are they right for you? In this informative guide, we'll delve into everything you need to know about dental bridges, from understanding their structure and function to exploring different types and their benefits and drawbacks.

Understanding the Basics of Dental Bridges:

Imagine a bridge connecting two landmasses across a gap. Well, a dental bridge works similarly, "bridging" the gap created by one or more missing teeth. It's a fixed dental restoration typically made of porcelain or other strong materials. Here's how it works:

  • Abutment teeth: These are the healthy teeth on either side of the gap where the missing tooth/teeth resided. They act as anchors for the bridge.

  • Pontic: This is the artificial tooth (or teeth) that replaces the missing one(s) and fills the gap. It's essentially what gets "bridged" between the abutment teeth.

  • Crowns: In most bridge types, crowns are placed over the abutment teeth to provide a strong foundation for the bridge and hold the pontic in place.

Different Types of Dental Bridges:

While the basic concept remains the same, there are different types of dental bridges available, each with its advantages and considerations:

  • Traditional fixed bridge: This is the most common type of bridge, utilizing dental crowns on the abutment teeth to support the pontic. It's suitable for replacing one or more missing teeth and offers a strong and durable solution.

  • Maryland bonded bridge: This bridge uses metal or porcelain wings bonded to the back of the abutment teeth instead of crowns. It's often used for replacing front teeth as it preserves more tooth structure and is less visible compared to traditional bridges with crowns. However, it might not be as strong as traditional bridges and might not be suitable for all situations.

  • Cantilever bridge: This type uses only one abutment tooth to support the pontic. While it's a less common option due to potential stress on the abutment tooth, it might be considered in certain situations with limited options.

Benefits of Dental Bridges:

So, why consider dental bridges? Here are some key advantages:

  • Improved aesthetics: Bridges restore the appearance of your smile, filling the gaps left by missing teeth and boosting your confidence.

  • Enhanced chewing function: Missing teeth can make chewing difficult. Bridges restore your ability to chew properly, promoting better digestion and overall oral health.

  • Speech improvement: Missing teeth can sometimes affect your speech. Bridges help restore proper pronunciation and speech clarity.

  • Prevents teeth shifting: Missing teeth can cause surrounding teeth to shift out of place, leading to bite problems and further complications. Bridges prevent this shifting by keeping the remaining teeth in their proper positions.

Considerations and Drawbacks:

While bridges offer numerous benefits, it's crucial to consider potential drawbacks and discuss them with your dentist:

  • Requirement of healthy abutment teeth: Placing crowns on healthy teeth is necessary for most bridge types, which might not be ideal for everyone.

  • Potential for future issues: Abutment teeth can face increased stress due to supporting the bridge, potentially requiring root canal treatment in some cases.

  • Maintenance needs: Like natural teeth, bridges require regular brushing, flossing, and professional cleaning for optimal longevity.

Making the Decision:

Ultimately, deciding if dental bridges are the right choice for you depends on various factors, including the number and location of missing teeth, your overall oral health, and your personal preferences.

It's crucial to consult with a qualified dentist who will assess your individual situation, discuss your concerns, and explore all available options. These include dental implants or dentures, before recommending the most suitable solution for you. Remember, an informed decision leads to better oral health and a confident, beautiful smile.

Smile Stop Dentures & Implants for Oklahoma Dentures

For residents of Tulsa and Bartlesville, and surrounding areas, seeking a trusted denture provider, Smile Stop Dentures & Implants stands out as a reliable option. With a focus on personalized care and patient comfort, their team of experienced dentists and staff is dedicated to providing high-quality dentures, dental implants, and teeth extraction services.

They pride themselves on using the latest technologies and techniques to ensure natural-looking and comfortable dentures, helping you regain confidence and a brighter smile.

At Smile Stop Dentures & Implants, their commitment to your satisfaction extends beyond the initial procedure. They understand that adjusting to dentures takes time and offer ongoing support to ensure a smooth transition.

Their experienced staff provides comprehensive cleaning and maintenance instructions, alongside regular check-ups to monitor your denture fit and address any concerns you might have. This dedication ensures a long-lasting positive experience with your dentures, allowing you to smile confidently for years to come.

Learn more about Smile Stop Dentures & Implants, click here.


Call today for a free consultation!

918-446-0128 (Tulsa)

918-331-2221 (Bartlesville)


Wes Thompson, DDS

5676 W Skelly Drive, Suite A Tulsa, OK. 74107 (918) 446-0128


John Lard, DDS

1820 SE Washington Blvd Bartlesville, OK 74006

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