Getting front tooth pulled and prepped for implant - can I get a Maryland bridge instead of a flipper?

I am planning to get one of my front teeth extracted and replaced with an implant. The oral surgeon told me that I would need to get either a flipper or Essix appliance from my dentist to wear for 6-7 months throughout the process. After researching both, they sound awful. I think a Maryland bridge sounds like a much better option. Any reason I can't do this? How expensive are they? Since this is just temporary, can a cheaper temporary version of the MD bridge be made?

Doctor Answers 7

Temporary options for anterior tooth

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Congratulations on making the best, long term choice for replacing your tooth.  Unfortunately, there is no ideal method of temporization.  Sometimes a temporary crown can be immediately placed on an implant, but not everyone is a candidate for this.  Most patients do fine with a well made and properly shaped flipper.  The issues with a Maryland bridge are cost,  and your restorative dentist having to unbond and rebond the bridge several times through-out your treatment.

Charlotte Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Cost is usually why Maryland bridges aren't used temporarily

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Most of the time we don't invest much money in something that will be disposable.  Temporary restorations are normally done in as inexpensive of a fashion as possible.  Since a Maryland bridge can ONLY be made out of materials that are strong, it is not considered a temporary option.  If money is no object, it certainly could be used.

The Resin-bonded or Maryland Bridge is wonderful but expensive for 6-7 months

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I recently had a young patient who had congenitally missing laterals.  after ortho she needed bone grafts,   then implant and finally full restoration.

we made her two bonded bridges that were worn for a total of 4 years.  After bone grafts, one sided needed repeat bone graft, after implant placement.

She was a cheerleader and had senior pictures in High School and college Freshman had total confidence with her smile.  Loved the bridges.  

The downside was about $6000 in total cost.  Comes out to about $1500 / year or about $4.00 a day.

We did discuss skipping the implants but the patients mother insisted only an implant was acceptable.

She now has two implants with ceramic crowns and is thrilled with the new look.  Even though she didn't mind flossing under the bridges, she won't miss doing it.


Maryland bridge vs. flipper

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There is no ideal way to temporize your front tooth. Flippers and essix retainers are the traditional temporaries and very cost effective but they are sometimes inconvenient. The maryland bridge may be expensive for you and tedious for the restorative dentist and surgeon. Another problem may be that there isn't enough space between your upper teeth and lower teeth to accomodate a Maryland bridge. A final option may be a snap-on-smile by Denmat. This can be an esthetic way to temporize the front of the mouth, more tolerable than a flipper, easier than a Maryland bridge.

Vicki Borowski, DDS
Dallas Dentist

Flipper vs resin bonded bridge

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Yes, the Maryland resin bonded bridge will be more convenient but it will cost you a lot more because the surgeon will have to remove it twice. Once to put in the implant in 4 months and at least  once or twice to have the crown inserted  The cheapest way to do this is to keep having resin teeth bonded in with a wire on the back instead of a lab made bridge which will cost much more 

Herbert Veisman, DDS
Toronto Periodontist

Dental implants

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Hi, thanks for write... Maryland is too expensive to temporary use, they're others options like a temporary support by 2 clams on each side of the front teeth and so many more. Good luck 

Jepssy Beltre, DDS
Dominican Republic Dentist
4.9 out of 5 stars 19 reviews


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yes, u can go for maryland bridge. it is much better option than flippers. in my practice i always give maryland bridge to patients.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.