How Maryland Bridges Differ From Other Types Of Dental Bridges

A Maryland bridge is one of the three common types of dental bridges dentists use to replace missing teeth. This particular type of bridge has some benefits over the other two types, but it also has some drawbacks. Here are several important things you should understand about Maryland bridges and how they differ from the other types of dental bridges.

What Is a Bridge?

Before you can understand the difference between a Maryland bridge and other types, you should understand what a dental bridge is in the first place. A dental bridge is a commonly used dental product that is designed to replace a missing tooth. It is one of several tooth-replacement options, and dental implants are another type.

A bridge contains several parts, including an artificial tooth. The artificial tooth is placed in the gap where the tooth is missing, and a dental bridge is held in place with surrounding teeth. The various types of bridges available differ in the way they are held in place.

How Is a Maryland Bridge Held in Place?

Some bridges are held in place with the two teeth surrounding the gap, and this occurs by attaching the artificial tooth to two dental crowns. For this to happen, the dentist must remove part of each surrounding tooth so that the crowns can fit over them. Other bridges are held in place with just one tooth that is next to the gap.

A Maryland bridge is held in place with metal bands and composite resin. The composite resin attaches to the backsides of the surrounding teeth, and the metal bands help make it secure.

What Are the Benefits of Maryland Bridges?

Maryland bridges have several key benefits when compared to other types. The first benefit is that they can be used for missing front teeth easier than other types of crowns. This is primarily because of the way they are held in place. A Maryland bridge does not require removing parts of the teeth next to it, and that is why they are often used for missing front teeth.

Because they do not require removing parts of the surrounding teeth, they are often viewed more positively. Any time you have to remove part of a natural tooth, it weakens the tooth. If there is a way to solve a dental problem without removing part of an unaffected tooth, dentists often prefer that method, and this is one of the top benefits of Maryland bridges.

What Are the Disadvantages of Maryland Bridges?

In addition to offering benefits, there are a couple disadvantages of Maryland bridges. The main disadvantage is the way the metal bands can affect the teeth they touch. As these metal bands touch your teeth, they can cause discoloration of the teeth. Fortunately, this occurs on the backsides of the teeth, but it is still a negative result of a Maryland bridge.

One other disadvantage of Maryland bridges is the cost. These bridges typically cost more than other types of bridges. They are slightly harder to install, and it's also important to know that some dentists do not even offer this type. Most dentists specialize in standard types of dental bridges, which means your dentist might not offer this particular type.

Like other types of bridges, getting a Maryland bridge will typically require two visits to the dentist, but this varies.

If you are tired of the way you look with a missing tooth, there are options. If you would like to find out if a dental bridge is a good option for your missing tooth, contact a local dental clinic that offers dental bridges.