Are you missing one or more teeth in a row? If so, dental bridges are a great way to replace those teeth and restore your smile and biting power. They work by placing a string of dental crowns together over the gap in your grin. But just how long do dental bridges last? If you take care of them, they can last quite a while. Let’s discuss how long you can expect them to last, what can cause them to fail, and how you can extend the lifespan of your bridge.
How Long Do Dental Bridges Last?
Different dental authorities give different answers to this question. The Cleveland Clinic claims that most bridges last five to seven years, ten at the absolute most. According to the University of Rochester Medical Center, however, bridges can last longer than 10 years, or even a lifetime, provided you practice excellent oral hygiene.
What Can Cause a Bridge to Fail?
Placing a dental bridge involves filing down the two remaining teeth on either side of the space in your smile so that crowns can be fitted over them. Because of this, there is an increased risk of cavities and gum disease in and around the crowned teeth, making the need for root canals much more likely. And if this happens, the whole bridge will fail. This is especially true if you neglect to brush the bridged teeth and floss under the bridge.
How Can You Make Your Bridge Last Longer?
Eating a mouth-healthy diet is one way to avoid bridge failure. This entails eating plenty of fresh fruits and raw vegetables as well as cutting back on sugary and starchy foods and beverages. In addition, it helps to avoid extremely hard and sticky foods, as they could place undue pressure on the bridge and cause it to fail earlier.
Proper oral hygiene is also incredibly important in extending the lifespan of your bridge. Make sure to brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes at a time. Also, floss at least once daily, taking care to thread the floss under your bridge to prevent plaque from building up underneath it and compromising the health of your bridge.
Many patients ask their dentist, “How long do dental bridges last?” The answer varies from person to person, but by following the tips described above, you can ensure your bridge lasts as long as it possibly can.
About the Author
Dr. Martin T. Barco III attended dental school at the University of North Carolina and has been practicing dentistry in the Bloomington, IN area for more than a decade. His professional memberships include the American Dental Association, the Indiana Dental Association, the Southern Indiana Dental Association, and the Spear Dental Study Club in Bloomington. His practice offers dental crowns and bridges to help you replace your missing teeth and get your smile and bite back. To learn more, visit Dr. Barco’s website.