Bridges are a common and effective method for dealing with missing teeth. This procedure helps to secure adjacent teeth and keep your smile and bite aligned.
However, cleaning and flossing bridges is a little different from the rest of your teeth. So, below we'll look at some best practices to clean and floss a dental bridge.
What Is A Dental Bridge?
As the name suggests, a dental bridge "bridges" the gap between two teeth when the middle tooth has been removed or is lost. The most common way is for two crowns to be placed over the adjacent teeth, called the abutment teeth, then a false tooth in the middle as a bridge.
Brushing A Dental Bridge
When it comes to brushing a dental bridge, dentists recommend the same twice-per-day schedule as brushing the rest of your teeth.
Try to avoid toothpaste that contains certain abrasives like baking soda as these can wear out the crowns prematurely. Also, use a soft-bristled brush and brush gently, with light pressure.
Electric toothbrushes are acceptable for brushing a dental bridge, just make sure to use one with soft bristles and do not over-brush. Many electric toothbrushes have timers built in, so make sure to use these to prevent over-brushing of the bridge and the rest of your teeth.
Flossing A Dental Bridge
Flossing a dental bridge is where some people may be a little confused. Since the nature of the bridge's design doesn't allow for gaps between teeth, it seems you can't floss.
Instead, you want to floss under the bridge as this is where food particles become lodged and difficult to remove with just brushing.
Flossing under a bridge can be difficult, so it is recommended to use a floss threader. These are small handles with a tiny loop that you can thread the floss through. You then easily guide the floss threader under the bridge, bringing the floss with it.
If you find a floss threader to be a hassle, another option is a Waterpik or water flosser. These devices propel a thin stream of water to gently push out food particles and other build-ups.
For those who don't want to deal with floss threaders, water flossers are a great option and provide a great way to keep a dental bridge clean. An added benefit is you can use them on the rest of your teeth for overall better dental hygiene.
Using Mouthwash With A Bridge
You can use any common mouthwash, including those with fluoride, to rinse after brushing and flossing a bridge.
This helps to remove any leftover debris and the fluoride can help to keep the remaining teeth stronger.
Using the tips above, you should be able to keep your dental bridge clean and healthy for years to come. If you have any additional questions about your bridge, contact our expert staff at Stuart Prosthetic Dentistry (772.286.1606). We're always available to help our patients with compassionate and professional care to help them maintain a healthy and brilliant smile.