Do you love to laugh but hate to smile because of your missing tooth or teeth? It’s a proven fact that laughing is good to your health. But how do you laugh without smiling? When you smile you are worried about what people are thinking about your teeth. If this sounds like you then there is a solution, and an affordable solution at that. A Dental Bridge!
What is a Dental Bridge you ask?
A dental bridge is a false tooth that’s used to fill the gap of your missing tooth. Dental bridges literally bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth. A bridge is made up of two crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap. These two anchoring teeth are called abutment teeth. The false tooth/teeth in between are called pontics and can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of these materials. Dental bridges are supported by natural teeth or implants and if well cared for, should last for 10 to 15 years.
What Are the Benefits of Dental Bridges?
· Restore your smile
· Prevent remaining teeth from drifting out of position
· Restore the ability to properly chew and speak
· Distribute the forces in your bite properly by replacing missing teeth
· Maintain the shape of your face
These are all very important reasons to get a dental bridge if needed.
The three main types of dental bridges are:
· Traditional bridges involve creating a crown for the tooth or implant on either side of the missing tooth, with a pontic in between. Traditional bridges are the most common type of bridge and are made of either porcelain fused to metal or ceramics.
· Cantilever bridges are used when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth.
· Maryland Bridges are made of porcelain teeth supported by a metal framework with metal wings on each side of the bridge, that are bonded to your existing adjacent teeth. They can also be made of zirconium, and not have any metal at all..
The Process for Getting a Dental Bridge
During the first visit the abutment teeth are prepared. Preparation involves recontouring these teeth by removing a portion of enamel to allow room for a crown to be placed over them. Next, impressions of the teeth are made, which serve as a model from which the bridge, pontic, and crowns will be made by a dental lab. Your dentist will make a temporary bridge to wear to protect the exposed teeth and gums while waiting on your permanent bridge is being made.
During the second visit, your temporary bridge will be removed and the new permanent bridge will be checked and adjusted, as necessary to achieve a proper fit. If all is well and fits properly your dentist will permanently cement the bridge and your smile will be restored.