Dental prosthesis is a part of dentistry through which oral function and esthetics are artificially rehabilitated and repaired.

It is a sanitary product that is made to measure to be able to replace lost teeth or parts of them to improve the chewing function of the oral cavity. This prosthesis is made in the laboratory using previously obtained models but a clinical adaptation is required in the patient’s mouth for a perfect fit.

There are two main types of dental prosthesis: fixed and removable prosthesis. The fixed prosthesis is one that remains in the oral cavity definitively, whereas the removable prosthesis, or so-called removable prosthesis, can be removed and put into situations that are required.

The fixed prosthesis is the one that most patients want as it is much more comfortable and the results are more satisfactory. In addition, with it you can obtain a better chewing function.

This type of prosthesis can range from the restoration of a single tooth to the complete rehabilitation of all teeth to obtain an ideal occlusion. Thus, adequate dental aesthetics and optimal oral function are obtained.

The fixed prosthesis can be either cemented in the natural teeth or it can also be attached to dental roots or they can also be cemented or screwed to dental implants.

There are several types of fixed prosthesis, among them the dental bridge stands out.

What is a dental bridge?

A dental bridge is a type of fixed prosthesis as it is permanently cemented. Dental bridges can be cemented on natural teeth or also on dental implants.

It is a type of prosthesis by which one or more missing teeth are replaced. This prosthesis adheres and joins the remaining teeth on both sides of the missing tooth. That is, the dental bridge encompasses a tooth before the absence of teeth, the artificial tooth in the area of ​​the absence of teeth and a tooth after the absence of teeth.

So dental bridges are made up of abutments, which are the teeth where the prosthesis is cemented, pontics, which are the artificial teeth that go in the area where there is the absence or absence of teeth, and the connectors that are the connecting elements between the abutment teeth and the pontics.

It is necessary to carry out a complete medical history together with a detailed examination and some complementary tests and finally a detailed study of the case in order to be able to adequately analyze the situation and know the most appropriate therapeutic decision in each particular case.

When is it necessary to change an old dental bridge?

Dental bridges are cemented to the abutment teeth, so that over the years the adhesion, retention and quality of the cement lose their initial properties.

Sometimes dental bridges stay in the mouth for many years, in other situations only a short time. The durability of the prosthesis in the oral cavity depends on a large number of factors such as the patient’s hygiene, the initial state of the abutment teeth, the type of dental preparation, the parallelism of the dental bridge, if it is located in the area. aesthetic or not, the occlusal adjustment, among other factors.

This is why there are certain characteristics that make and indicate the need to change an old dental bridge and replace it with one with better and new conditions.

The presence of a gingival retraction may be one of the appropriate reasons for the need to change an old dental bridge. If it is in an aesthetic zone, that is, it is part of one of the anterior teeth, with even more impetus. Gingival retractions in dental bridges are frequent if there is poor oral hygiene or a poor fit of the bridge, so that the bacterial plaque accumulates over time and the gingiva reacts to the presence of bacteria and retracts.

In the past, dental bridges were made of metal and ceramic, so as a consequence of gingival retraction, a dark line can be seen in the gingival area corresponding to the metal of the prosthesis. In posterior areas this is not an absolute indication of the need to change an old dental bridge, but if this dark line exists in the anterior area it may be a strong indication for the patient to want to change the bridge and obtain an aesthetic improvement.

Another of the indications which indicate that it may be necessary to change the old bridge is the change of color. The passage of time means that natural teeth can vary in tone, so there may be a color variability between the bridge and the teeth themselves. Also, over the years, dental prosthesis wear out and become unfit as they lose all their initial properties. The wear can be produced by a habitual chewing activity or also by some type of parafunctional habit such as bruxism which should be controlled before proceeding to change the dental prosthesis. The mismatch of the prosthesis can be produced by the loss of properties of the cement or also by the presence of a dental or gingival pathology.



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