Bridges

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If you have a space from a missing tooth or teeth a bridge can be custom made to fill in the space with a false tooth or teeth. The false tooth is attached by the bridge to the two other teeth around the space – bridging them together. A good bridge offers the patient a completely natural looking, natural feeling, and attractive substitute for the missing tooth or teeth. Some of our happiest patients are those with porcelain bridges. Bridges are permanent, and best of all, an affordable way to maintain the integrity of your teeth and gums.

How is dental bridge accomplished?

We will prepare your teeth on either side of the space for the false tooth. You will be given a mild anesthetic to numb the area, and the cosmetic dentist will remove the area of each abutment (teeth on either side of the space) to accommodate for the thickness of the crown. When these teeth already have fillings, part of the filling may be left in place to help as a foundation for the crown.

We then use a 3D scanner called an iTero Scanner, which will build (through 3D photographs taken by the doctor or assistant) and exact replica of your teeth and gums so that the most exacting bridge can be formed by the lab. This new procedure is the most accurate way to have a perfectly fitted bridge made without multiple adjustments. A temporary bridge will be placed for you to wear while your bridge is being made until your next visit, usually about 2 weeks. This temporary bridge will serve to protect your teeth and gums and will allow normal functioning. (Though it is advisable to be a bit careful with chewy or hard foods while the temporary bridge is in place.)

The doctor may have you use a Flipper appliance. A Flipper is a false tooth to temporarily take the place of a missing tooth before the permanent bridge is placed. A Flipper can be attached via either a wire or a plastic piece that fits in the roof of your mouth. Flippers are meant to be a temporary solution while awaiting the permanent bridge.

On your second appointment, the temporary bridge will be removed. Your new permanent bridge will be fitted and checked and adjusted for any bite discrepancies. Your new bridge will then be cemented to your teeth. With proper care a bridge can be expected to last several decades.

Reasons to consider a Bridge:

When teeth are missing and there are teeth on either side of the space a bridge is the ideal way to replace the missing teeth. When there has been the loss of a tooth or teeth and there is a tooth on either side of the open space, replacement teeth can be attached to two crowns constructed for the 2 teeth on either side of the open space. This is called a bridge because it bridges the open space.
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When a tooth is lost for whatever reason, 5 or more other teeth may drift so it is essential to place a replacement tooth as soon as possible. The space left from missing teeth may cause one of several problems. Teeth may drift into the space changing your bite. This changed bite may result in sore jaws, gum disease, or decay (due to more difficult hygiene).

A fixed bridge is used to replace one or several teeth. The teeth on each end of the space is used as anchors (abutments). Bridges are not removable by the patient. As with other types of crowns (caps), a bridge can be made of metal or porcelain, or a combination of these two.

Bridges are natural in appearance, and usually require only two visits to your dentist. If you maintain good oral hygiene, your fixed bridge should last as many as ten years or more.

Disadvantages of having a dental bridge:

It is common for your teeth to be mildly sensitive to extreme temperatures for a few weeks after the treatment. The buildup of bacteria formed from food acids on your teeth and gums can become infected if proper oral hygiene is not followed. You must floss under the false tooth in order to prevent buildup.

If you are considering a bridge call our office to schedule to an appointment. We will sit with you and discuss all your alternatives
and answer any questions you may have.