Missing teeth can dramatically change the look of your smile. Dental bridges are tooth restorations that restore your smile while providing stability through a less invasive procedure. Downtown Dental Associates can help you determine if dental bridges are a good solution for your missing teeth.
- Bridges are helpful for a variety of reasons:
- Restore smiles a missing tooth may cause you to hide your beautiful smile, but bridges give renewed confidence.
- High success rates dental bridges will last between 5-10 years but can even last up to 20 if well-maintained.
- Keeps facial tone and shapes if you are missing teeth, your facial musculature and your jaw bone may change over time, but replacing lost teeth helps prevent any changes.
- Prevents TMJ disorder and chewing issues since it is hard to chew properly with missing teeth, TMJ, a jaw joint disorder, may occur if the problem isn’t fixed.
- Speak correctly the tongue pushes against the backs of upper teeth to pronounce words, so missing teeth can change the way you talk.
- Stops teeth shifting a dental bridge would prevent teeth around the missing teeth to shift, tilt or drift.
The bridge is made up of two dental crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap and a false tooth in-between. During the first visit, Dr. Witten will examine the gum health to determine if you are a good candidate. Then you are given a local anesthesia as Dr. Witten prepares the teeth that will support the bridge. If the support teeth are decayed or broken down, Dr. Witten may build them back up before they are used as bridge support.
An impression of the teeth is taken with a putty-like material that creates a model of your teeth. The bridge is fabricated by a skilled lab technician, so it snugly fits the prepared teeth. If it doesn’t fit perfectly it may cause tooth decay.
Candidates for Dental Bridges
Anyone who has missing teeth and healthy enough teeth to support a bridge is a candidate. But make sure good oral hygiene is used so that you will make the most of your bridge.
Types of Bridges
- There are three main types of bridges:
- Traditional: creates a crown for the tooth or implant on either side of the missing tooth with a false tooth in-between. These are the most common type of bridge and are made of porcelain fused to metal or ceramics.
- Cantilever bridges: used when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth.
- Maryland bonded bridges: are made of plastic teeth and gums supported by a metal framework. Metal wings on each side of the bridge are bonded to existing teeth.
Dental Bridge Care
Dental bridges should be treated with the same care as all other teeth brush twice a day and floss once a day. When flossing the bridge though, be sure to slide the floss out instead of lifting the floss up and snapping it out. Dr. Witten will show you how to floss properly to best take care of your new smile.