If you are looking for a simple solution to missing teeth, then our team here at Advanced Family Dentistry strongly recommends the use of bridges. Bridges are a simple and effective restoration that makes use of neighboring teeth to support a false tooth or teeth in place. The application of bridges or pontics can be done in four different ways.
Types of Bridges
The traditional bridge involves a false tooth being cemented to each of the abutments, or neighboring teeth. This procedure is done when there are natural teeth still in place on both sides of the gap. A cantilever dental bridge is performed where there is only a natural abutment tooth to one side, so the pontic is cemented to that side.
The Maryland bridge is similar to a traditional bridge, only that instead of a crown being used to fill the gap, a framework of porcelain or metal is used. It is bonded to the backs of the neighboring teeth. Finally, there is the implant-supported dental bridge. As the name suggests the bridge is supported by a dental implant. Though more complex than the rest, this procedure offers the strongest results. It requires two well-spaced appointments. One visit to fix the dental implant into the jawbone, and the second to place the bridge.
Benefits of Bridges
Filling the gap typically takes two visits to our dentist, making it a quick solution in restoring a full smile. Missing teeth tend to make people self-conscious. This restorative procedure will help restore confidence and make a person more confident in smiling. The ability to chew comfortably will also be restored as the surface area to do will now be bigger. Gaps, particularly in the back make it hard to chew properly and can irritate the gums.
It also makes patients better able to speak clearly. From our medical viewpoint, the most important impact is in preserving bite. A gap makes the abutments more likely to shift position and gradually cause misalignment. Keeping your teeth in their proper place can help in preserving the shape of your face. Crooked and missing teeth have the potential to cause your face to cave in at certain points.
Depending on the particular type of bridge procedure you have done, you can get great value for money. Even with a traditional bridge that tends to be the cheapest option, you can get over 15 years’ worth of use out of it.
The Procedure for Bridges
The first step involves preparing the neighboring teeth or abutments for the bridge. This will involve cleaning and filing down some of the enamel to make space for the crowns to be placed. An impression is then taken of the surrounding teeth and gap. This will be used in the lab to create a custom-made bridge. A temporary bridge is put in place to protect the teeth and gums.
During the next appointment, the temporary bridge will be removed, and the custom made one fitted. To ensure the framework or crown is fitted well, we may temporarily cement it in place for a few weeks. If this works out well, then we can later permanently cement it.
To find out more about bridges and our other restorative treatment options for missing teeth, get in touch with us today. Call us at Advanced Family Dentistry at (765) 287-5338 to book your appointment.