A Guide to Dental Bridges
If you have a tooth missing from your mouth, there are options to replace it. One of these is with a dental bridge. A dental bridge will be made out of porcelain and fits over the teeth on either side of the space left by one or more missing teeth. The procedure for fitting a dental bridge involves having an impression taken of your teeth for them to be custom-made for you. To preserve your natural smile, this method can help restore it to what it was originally.
What Is a Dental Bridge?
A dental bridge is a type of restoration used to replace missing teeth. It is anchored on either side of your mouth and then crowned with a tooth that matches one or more adjacent teeth' color, shape, and size. A dental bridge can be used to replace just one tooth, two neighboring teeth, or an entire row of missing teeth. Bridges are typically made of metal alloys like porcelain fused to metal (PFM). However, other types, such as resin-bonded PFM, may be better for you if you have sensitive gums or oral piercings in certain places where traditional dental materials would irritate them.
Since they're not removable except when the dentist removes them for cleaning, dental bridges are a permanent type of restoration. This means that your new smile will look just as great in 20 years from now as it does the day you get the bridge placed.
Types of Dental Bridges
There are three types of bridges: traditional, cantilever and resin-bonded. Each type has its specific benefits, so it's important to talk with Dr. Obinna about what might be right for you.
- Traditional bridges: The traditional bridge is the most popular bridge that replaces missing teeth or several teeth in a row. Two dental crowns are placed on adjacent teeth, with the false tooth (or teeth) in between them. It is the most secure type of bridge and can last many years with proper care.
- Cantilever bridges: A cantilever bridge replaces one missing tooth without anchoring teeth on either side of the space. This bridge is used when no teeth are available on either side of the missing tooth to place crowns on. It's not as secure as a traditional bridge and may not be suitable for larger spaces or if you have a lot of movement in your jaw.
- Resin-bonded bridges: These bridges are made out of plastic and metal alloys and replace just one missing tooth. The false tooth is held in place by resin that bonds to the teeth on either side of the space. This type of bridge is less durable than traditional or cantilever bridges, but it's a good option if you have sensitive gums or oral piercings in certain places.
How Are Dental Bridges Placed?
To place a bridge, Dr. Obinna will first prepare your mouth by removing any decay or other tooth matter that may be interfering with the procedure and then make an impression of your teeth to send out for lab work (this is called "taking a bite"). Once you return from getting your bridge made, it will be fitted into place and adjusted if necessary. You may need to go back for a few follow-up appointments to ensure the bridge fits comfortably and that your bite is correct.
Just like your natural teeth, you'll want to keep your dental bridge clean and free of cavities. You can brush, floss, and rinse around the area to remove plaque that may have built up during the day or night. If you're wearing braces at the same time as getting a new smile with bridges, make sure you get them adjusted, so they don't damage your bridge.
Dental Bridges Near Me
If you're missing teeth and are interested in getting a dental bridge, contact our office today to schedule a consultation. Dr. Obinna will tell you if bridges are the right restoration for you and help get your new smile started.