The resin bonded bridge, sometimes referred to as a Maryland bridge, is the best option for replacing a missing front tooth when a young patient is not yet a candidate for a dental implant. This type of bridge is essentially a pontic or artificial porcelain tooth with a wing attached to it. The wing is hidden from view by bonding it to the back of one of the teeth on either side of the space.
Before & After Resin Bonded Dental Bridge
Patrick was congenitally missing his two lateral front teeth. He had recently completed orthodontic treatment and he and his parents wanted a way to fill the gaps until he was old enough for dental implants.
Other complications existed including the fact that the front teeth were narrow, making the space wider than normal. Additionally, one front tooth was smaller than the other.
Dr. Van Gurp used conservative porcelain veneers on the front teeth to make them wider and more symmetrical and then placed a resin-bonded bridge with natural shaped prosthetic teeth.
"We have anticipated the moment of Patrick’s perfect smile for years. He has gone through years of missing teeth and braces waiting patiently for the moment that he could smile with confidence. Our prayers were answered when we walked through the doors of Van Gurp Dentistry. We would like to thank Dr. Van Gurp and his entire staff for their upmost professionalism, perfectionism, and expediency. Patrick began his senior year of high school with a new sense of pride due to his complete and perfect smile." - Patrick's Mom
Benefits of Resin Bonded Dental Bridge
An advantage of this bridge design is that the supporting teeth adjacent to the space are hardly affected by a resin-bonded bridge. The teeth are minimally trimmed down and the “wing” is simply bonded to the supporting tooth. As a result, the procedure is somewhat reversible should the decision be made at a later time to replace the bridge with a dental implant.
Color and Shape
A high degree of artistry is needed to allow the bridge to blend in with the other natural teeth both in color. To match the color of a single artificial crown to all of the front teeth is very difficult – one of the most difficult tasks in dentistry. Teeth are not simply of one color but instead typically have within them a multitude of colors.
Regarding appearance, we will do everything we can to match the bridge to the patient’s natural teeth. In fact, it is not uncommon for our laboratory ceramist, who makes the bridge, to meet us at the office so that he can accurately record the various colors of the teeth.
Even then, once we try in the bridge at the next appointment, we may decide to modify the shade or shape. Needless to say, some teeth are more difficult to match than others so we appreciate your patience in this regard.
Until recently, resin bonded bridges were made with a metal substructure for strength. Unfortunately, the appearance of the teeth suffered in that the metal showed through and the teeth appeared grey. Today, we are using a relatively strong porcelain as a substructure, which results in a bridge that appears much more life-like. Be that as it may, one cannot expect porcelain to be as strong as metal. Thus, if one does not take certain precautions (outlined below) in the care of the bridge, problems with breakage can occur.
Having had considerable post-graduate training regarding occlusion (the bite), we know how to construct the bridge in such a fashion that the stresses on the bridge are minimized. In fact, we have found that the vast majority of failures (bridge coming loose or breaking) are attributable to patients not following the necessary precautions.
Care and Precautions For Maryland Bridge
Taking especially good care of your bridge is important. The best first step to doing so is to incorporate good oral hygiene into your daily routine. We recommend gentle brushing with a soft-bristled tooth brush. Second, we have outlined the concerns regarding the strength of the porcelain. With that in mind, this bridge should be viewed as more “show” than “go”. In other words, refrain from biting directly into anything hard that may create significant stress on the bridge. Foods items such as raw carrots, apples, and pizza should be cut first and chewed on your back teeth.
Help us to help you!
Van Gurp Dentistry is excited to play a role in creating a beautiful smile for your child. When a young patient finally completes their orthodontic treatment, usually both patient and parent are anxious to have the space or spaces filled in front. We at Van Gurp Dentistry understand this. Be that as it may, we ask that you be patient. We want to properly plan this procedure to achieve the best possible result. Rushing through a difficult procedure such as this only increases the likelihood that the restoration will fall short in one or more aspects.