Difference Between Dental Bridges & Dentures

denturesTooth loss is stressful; we often consider our myriad oral hygiene efforts to be based around maintaining our natural teeth. However, this simply isn’t possible all the time. For an assortment of reasons — some completely out of your control — you can lose one or multiple teeth. Not only can this hinder your chewing, eating, and biting, but it can also negatively affect your self-image. You never want to feel self-conscious about or hide your smile. Depending on the placement and number of your missing teeth, bridges or dentures can offer a solution. In today’s blog your Richfield, MN, dentist will discuss the differences between these two solutions and which one might best suit your needs.

What Is A Dental Bridge?

A dental bridge is a permanent prosthetic appliance made from ceramic or porcelain. It fits between the teeth adjacent to your missing one and is supported by the existing teeth. It is matched to seamlessly fit the color of your natural teeth, so it fully blends in. There are different types of bridges that all suit different needs, so your dentist will pick the kind that best fits your specific needs. Overall, a dental bridge is typically used when you are either missing a single tooth or a few directly next to one another. 

When Do I Need Dentures?

As opposed to a bridge, dentures — partial or complete — can fit around teeth that still exist, even if they are not adjacent. They can also replace a full row of missing teeth. Dentures are color-matched to your teeth and gums, so they are not noticeable. An important difference is also that dentures can typically be removed. You could opt for a prosthetic secured with dental implants for a more permanent appliance. This is a decision you can make with the help of your dentist. 

How Do I Maintain Them?

If you have a bridge, you’ll just need to treat it like you do your natural teeth. Brush it and floss your mouth as you normally would. Remember, it is created with materials that are made to closely resemble your teeth, so caring for it should be relatively seamless. Though you should still schedule regular checkups and cleanings. Dentures require more specific care. You should still brush them to remove food and bacteria. You also need to make sure they don’t dry out. When not wearing them, keep them in a cleansing solution or in plain water. Once you have either appliance placed, your dentist will give you thorough, specific directions to keep them clean and your smile looking radiant.

Have More Questions About Solutions For Missing Teeth?

We’re ready to help you enjoy a complete smile. To find out more about the process of addressing your tooth loss with a prosthetic or implant, then please call Cedar West Family Dentistry at (612) 861-7188. You can also find us at 1537 E 66th Street, Suite #101Richfield, MN 55423.