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2 Situations Where A Cantilever Dental Bridge May Be The Best Treatment Option

The loss of a natural tooth, whether due to trauma or decay, requires the quick installation of a dental replacement to maintain your bite comfortably. There are a variety of dental replacement options on the market and one of those is a dental bridge, which includes one artificial tooth that is suspended by two crowns that are attached to healthy natural teeth in the area.

On a traditional bridge, those crowns are attached to the teeth on either side of the missing tooth for balanced support of the artificial crown. But there are some situations where a traditional bridge isn't viable and a cantilever bridge, which places both crowns on one side, is a better option.

Here are two situations where a cantilever dental bridge might be your general dentistry's office best treatment option.

Missing Tooth Is the Second Molar

The second molar teeth are located near the very rear of your mouth – or in the very rear position if you don't have wisdom teeth that have fully erupted. If there isn't a wisdom tooth, which is also called the third molar, then there is no tooth on that side to attach a crown to and a cantilever bridge would have to be used instead with the first crown attaching to the first molar.

Note that your dentist isn't going to want to attach a traditional bridge to a wisdom tooth even if that tooth has emerged. Wisdom teeth are notoriously problematic and can require extraction even after eruption. It is safer to use the cantilever bridge and compromise a bit on the weight balance rather than attaching a crown to a tooth that might need to be removed.

Neighboring Teeth Have Decay Not Treatable with Crowns

Are there teeth present on both sides of the missing tooth but those teeth aren't in the best shape? Minor problems like cavities or small chips can be fixed with fillings and the dental crown that will need to go over the teeth to support the traditional bridge.

But if one of the teeth is substantially damaged, perhaps to the point that an extraction might become necessary in the near future, your dentist won't want to adhere a dental crown. The dental crown could worsen the progression of the tooth by trapping in infectious bacteria or by making it harder for your dentist to see how the deterioration is progressing.

If one of the teeth is in bad condition, consider opting for a cantilever bridge instead. For more information, talk to your dentist.