If you’ve lost a tooth or two over the years, a dental bridge can treat consecutive missing teeth. It’s a tried-and-proven solution to recreate the portions of your lost teeth above the gum line. Thanks to advancements in dentistry, they look and feel more realistic than ever. Not to mention, they are made of durable material to last for many years with the right care. Here’s the average dental bridge lifespan and what you can do to ensure your new smile thrives for years.
How Long Do Dental Bridges Last?
The most traditional treatment for one or more lost teeth in a row involves using a bridge and crowns. Your dentist takes an impression of your mouth to create prosthetic teeth that mimic your natural smile. They are held in place by bonding dental crowns over the adjacent teeth. According to the Cleveland Clinic, the average lifespan of a fixed bridge is about 5 to 7 years; however, it’s not uncommon for them to last for decades with the proper care, like maintaining your oral hygiene at home and visiting your dentist regularly. Poor oral hygiene habits are the leading cause of dental bridge failure.
How Do I Care for My Bridge?
Although your bridge isn’t subject to decay, you still need to take the time to care for it to promote its longevity while keeping your smile healthy. Your dentist recommends using a soft-bristled toothbrush and nonabrasive toothpaste to clean your teeth and bridge for at least 2 minutes in the morning and at night. You’ll also need to floss between your teeth daily. Interdental brushes or a water flosser can be easier to clean the hard-to-reach areas near your bridge. An antimicrobial mouthrinse is also beneficial because it can kill harmful bacteria left behind by your toothbrush and floss.
Besides caring for your smile at home, the American Dental Association recommends visiting your dentist at least twice a year for a cleaning and checkup. They’ll also check your bridge at each routine appointment to ensure it’s still functioning as intended.
You’ll also want to avoid anything that might damage your bridge, like eating overly hard or sticky foods. It’s best to cut your foods into smaller pieces and chew evenly on both sides of your mouth. If you have any questions about what you can and cannot eat with your bridge, don’t hesitate to contact your dentist.
Invest in a Complete Smile
A dental bridge is a long-term solution to enjoy a complete, beautiful smile again. If you’re interested in a more permanent treatment, ask your dentist about the benefits of adding dental implants to support your bridge.
About Dr. Mark Hochman
Dr. Hochman earned his dental degree at Howard University School of Dentistry and completed his residency in general dentistry. He has undergone advanced training at the Dawson Institute, Rosenthal, and many other prestigious facilities. He offers the latest treatments and techniques to resolve complex oral health issues, like tooth loss. If you’re ready to replace your missing teeth, contact our office today to schedule your consultation.