Our smiles are incredibly important to us and many Americans go to great lengths to perfect theirs. You’ve spent years brushing diligently, periodically whitening, and maybe even going through years of orthodontic work to achieve a smile you’re proud of. Unfortunately, however, sometimes life throws us a curveball and for one reason or another, we find ourselves in a place where one or more of our teeth have gone missing. While sporting a gap in your smile can be embarrassing and even painful, do not fear! There are a multitude of ways in which you can get back to feeling as confident as ever. Dental bridges are one of the most reliable ways to replace missing teeth, and there are a few options available to you. While options include traditional bridges, dental implant-supported bridges, and Maryland bridges, today we will be looking at the pros and cons of the cantilever bridge.
What is a Cantilever Bridge?
A cantilever bridge differs from other bridges in that it is only anchored in place on one side instead of two. Often used when there is only one adjacent tooth to support the bridge, they are almost entirely as strong as their traditional counterparts. Typically made of either ceramic and metal or entirely of ceramic, cantilever bridges often replace missing front teeth.
The Pros of Cantilever Bridges
- They are less invasive. Because they only require impacting one other tooth, less natural tooth surface is disturbed. Additionally, cantilever bridges are reversible.
- They look natural. Cantilever bridges are used frequently in the front of the mouth and are able to blend almost seamlessly with surrounding teeth.
- A cheaper alternative. Since there is less work required to place a cantilever bridge and few parts altogether, they are typically more affordable than other kinds of bridges.
- Their longevity makes them attractive. In fact, 4 out of 5 cantilever bridges are intact and functional 18 years after being placed.
- The healthier alternative. There is less of a chance of decay forming around a cantilever bridge.
- They are easy to place. Most cantilever bridge placements are so simple they do not even require anesthesia, making them an attractive option for younger patients.
- They aren’t for everyone. In order to have a cantilever bridge placed, your mouth must meet a few strict requirements, including having healthy gums and oral tissue.
- They could fail. Although cantilever bridges typically last for years, there is a higher chance of failure when bridges are not attached to the sturdier teeth found at the back of the mouth.
- Damage may occur. Because they are only anchored on one side, there is a slightly higher risk of cracking or debonding than with other bridges.
If you are in need of replacing a missing tooth, it’s important to weigh all of your options to make a decision that is best for you. Your dentist will be able to help you understand your unique situation as well as point you in the direction best for you to replace your tooth.
If you would like to schedule a consultation to meet with your dentist in Palantine, IL, give us a call at Meadows Dental Care today!