What is an Implant Supported Bridge

If you are missing teeth, the remaining gap should be filled, or the neighboring natural teeth will immediately shift into the gap. Your dentist can fill the space in your smile with a dental bridge. A traditional dental bridge can be either an artificial tooth or multiple teeth, which are called pontics, that are suspended in the gap by securing them to the two abutment teeth on both sides of the space.

These artificial crowns are custom created in porcelain or ceramic to visually match your natural teeth.
An implant-supported bridge is very much like a traditional bridge. The primary difference is instead of being supported by dental crowns placed over those two adjacent teeth, the implant-supported bridge attaches to and is supported by small titanium posts surgically implanted in your jawbone. The number of posts necessary will depend on the length of the bridge to replace the number of missing teeth.

Implant-Supported Bridge versus Traditional Bridge

To choose an implant-supported bridge restoration, you first go through the process of the implants being surgically placed. This then will require sufficient time for the posts to bond, fuse, and integrate with the jawbone.

Even though an implant supported bridge is a larger investment in both time and cost, it does offer numerous benefits over a traditional bridge. With a traditional bridge, the teeth on each side of the gap must be altered to accept a crown. Since the implant-supported bridge does not need the adjacent teeth for support, these healthy teeth are left completely natural. The implant supported bridge is incredibly secure and stable, and will not be an issue while you eat, speak, and smile.

As an added unseen benefit, implants are the only solution of tooth restoration that maintains your jawbone from atrophy. An implant-supported bridge replaces your entire tooth, from crown to root. By functioning as artificial tooth roots, the implant continuously stimulates the jawbone. Without the tooth roots, your body begins to naturally distribute the jawbone tissue elsewhere. With proper daily oral hygiene, your implant posts will last your lifetime and contribute to your long-term oral health.

Are You a Candidate for an Implant Supported Bridge

To meet the qualifications for an implant supported bridge restoration, you need to be in good oral health and have sufficient bone mass and density in your jawbone to successfully support the implants.

If you are lacking adequate bone mass, it can be rejuvenated by having a procedure such as a bone graft and a sinus lift. If you currently have gum disease or tooth decay, your dentist must first rectify these issues before proceeding with placing implants. If you smoke, you need to be willing to stop for a period before and after your implant surgery. If you have diabetes, it can also prevent you from successfully receiving implants. Your dentist will collaborate with you to create a plan that allows implants to become a beneficial restoration moving forward to recover your healthy smile.

If you are missing two or more teeth in one spot, an implant-supported bridge will provide a natural-looking restoration with many benefits. The number of implants you will need will be determined by the size of the gap and the number of teeth you are missing. It is a very worthwhile investment in your future oral health.

How Long Does an Implant Supported Bridge Last