How long does a dental bridge last?
Dental bridges are one of the more popular treatment options used today for the replacement of a missing tooth. Tooth replacement treatment is important because it not only fixes the look of a smile, but also restores the full function of the mouth and will help prevent dental problems that may occur from the shifting of other teeth. Thanks to advances in dental technology, there are many replacement options available. Dental implants offer a permanent, but more expensive replacement option. Dental bridges are a more affordable alternative, and when they fit properly, are effective and can help improve your dental health. While they may be less permanent than an implant, the life a dental bridge can be long. How long a dental bridge will last depends on many factors. Here is more information on the life of a dental bridge and the factors that influence that lifespan.
Dental bridge lifespans
On average, a dental bridge will usually last between 5 and 7 years. According to some sources, maintaining good oral hygiene and good overall health can go a long way to helping a dental bridge last even longer, up to 10 years or more.
Why are dental bridges not permanent?
Dental bridges are not intended to be a permanent tooth replacement option. One of the biggest factors impacting the life expectancy of a dental bridge is the type of bridge. A traditional dental bridge, supported by the adjacent teeth, is the most durable type and the most likely to last the longest. Traditional bridges require the filing down of the adjacent teeth to make sure that the crowns fit securely. Overtime, these teeth may decay quicker and it is possible for gum disease to develop around the bridge. This is one reason why dental hygiene is so important to helping bridges last. If gum disease or tooth decay occurs treatment will be needed, and the dental bridge will need to be removed.
Preventing the need for a dental bridge replacement
To avoid a bridge replacement and ensure the longer life of a dental bridge there are many things you can do. These include:
- Eating a healthy diet. Fruits, vegetables and fiber are all important to good oral health. Avoiding foods high in sugar and starch will help prevent tooth decay.
- Avoid eating foods that put stress on your bridge. Foods that are sticky or hard, such as candy or popcorn can be difficult on your bridge when you are chewing and may cause your bridge to become loose.
Caring for dental bridges
Practicing good routine oral hygiene is the best way to take care of your dental bridge. Depending on their location, bridges can be hard to floss and brush around. It is important to maintain regular brushing and flossing and regular visits to the dentist for professional cleanings. Good oral hygiene will keep your bridge from deteriorating and keep the supporting teeth and the rest of your teeth healthy.
How long a dental bridge will last really depends on YOU, on your oral health, and how well you take care of your teeth.
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