While cosmetic dentist procedures are generally believed to be aesthetic in nature, they also carry a variety of restorative and preventive benefits. Teeth that are crooked, out of line, or uneven can make it uncomfortable or difficult to eat, and at times, these issues can cause speech impediments and lower a person’s self-esteem. It is…
When Is a Dental Bridge Recommended to Replace Missing Teeth?
A dental bridge replaces one or more lost teeth with artificial teeth. Bridges rely on one or two natural teeth near the gap to stay in position. A dental bridge can be fixed (meaning they are permanent), or removable. Dental bridges are also sometimes described as fixed partial dentures.
The need to replace missing teeth
Replacing missing teeth is good for oral health. Due to the cost of dental restoration, many people delay replacing missing teeth. Unfortunately, the delay worsens the problem, potentially increasing the cost of tooth replacement. Some of the side effects of untreated tooth loss include gum disease, shifting of adjacent teeth, jawbone deterioration, TMJ pain, and uneven biting power.
How dental bridges work
A dental bridge literally bridges the gap between the teeth. A dentist will use healthy teeth on the side of the gap to support the bridge securely. A dental bridge is mostly recommended when a patient still has healthy and strong teeth to support a replacement. The bridge consists of two parts: the permanent tooth to cover the space and dental crowns that cover the existing teeth. Depending on the number and position of missing teeth, the dental bridge may have more than two crowns and replacement teeth.
Dental bridges look and function like natural teeth. Unlike dentures, they are fixed in place. Patients will be able to eat, smile, and talk as usual without worrying about the appearance of their smile. The bridge is produced from biocompatible materials, promotes gum health, and slows down the rate of bone loss.
Getting a dental bridge
A person that has missing or damaged teeth will need to book an appointment with a dentist for a consultation. During the appointment, the dentist will examine the teeth and review possible options. When only one to three teeth are missing consecutively, a dental bridge is one of the most effective options for tooth replacement. Also, the nearby teeth (called abutments) that will support the bridge need to be healthy and have a good root system. The success of the dental bridge relies on how long the abutment teeth hold up.
If the patient is ready, the dentist may begin the preparation process for the bridge at the first dental visit. The adjacent teeth will be scraped for the incoming crown, and impressions will be taken. The impressions ensure the final bridge fits perfectly in the mouth. A temporary bridge will be provided to protect the teeth during the production of the permanent bridge.
When the final bridge is ready, the patient will return for another appointment. The dentist will remove the temporary bridge and bond the new dental bridge into place. They will examine it and make necessary adjustments to ensure a comfortable fit.
If you have had missing teeth for a while or you recently lost them, you need to visit a dental office. Our dentist will recommend the most effective option, which could be a dental bridge, to restore the function and appearance of your smile.
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