If you are missing a single tooth or multiple teeth in a row, a dental bridge can offer a great, inexpensive solution to restore your smile.
Dental Bridge Options
A bridge is a device that fills the gap created by one or more missing teeth.
Dental bridges can come in different sizes depending on the number of teeth missing, such as a 3-unit dental bridge, 4-unit bridge or a 5-unit bridge.There are two types of bridges- removable and fixed. Fixed bridges comprise of crowns on the abutment teeth (anchoring teeth on the sides of the gap) and a false tooth or "pontic" in the middle. Removable bridges are attached to the teeth with metal clasps or by precision attachments. As the names suggest, fixed bridges are bonded into place and can only be removed by a dental professional. Removable bridges can be taken out by the patients at home.
Dental bridges can be made from a variety of materials including porcelain, gold or alloy depending on the situation.
Benefits of Dental Bridges
- Restore your ability to properly chew and speak.
- Alleviate excess stress on your bite.
- Maintain the shape of your face and restore your smile and confidence.
- Prevent the existing teeth from moving out of position.
It typically requires only two visits to complete the dental bridge. In the first visit, Dr. Gill will prepare the abutment teeth which involves recontouring these teeth by removing a portion of the enamel or dentin for the placement of crowns over them. Next, impressions of the teeth are made which serve as a model from which the bridge, pontic (false tooth) and crowns will be made. Dr. Gill will make you a temporary bridge to wear in the meanwhile to protect the exposed teeth and gums.
When we receive the permanent bridge from the lab, your second appointment will be scheduled. During this visit, Dr. Gill will remove the temporary bridge and the new bridge will be checked and adjusted as necessary to achieve a proper fit. If you and Dr. Gill are satisfied with the fit, the bridge is cemented into place.
Taking Care of your Dental Bridge
The dental bridge relies on the neighboring teeth for support so it is extremely important to keep them healthy and strong. Brushing twice a day and flossing will prevent tooth decay and gum disease that can lead to tooth loss. Also, see Dr. Gill for your regular checkups that will help diagnose a problem at an early stage when treatment has a better prognosis. With good oral hygiene and regular checkups, it is not unusual for the bridge to last over 10 years.
To find out whether a dental bridge is right for you, call our office today and schedule your personalized consultation with Dr. Gill.