A dental bridge is a long-lasting solution for replacing lost teeth. A bridge is made up of three or more crowns that are fused together. Unlike dentures, bridges are permanently cemented onto existing teeth and cannot be removed.
Advantages of having a dental bridge include:
- A natural, healthy appearance
- Can be applied in only two office visits
- More permanent and secure than dentures, with no sliding or moving
- Help return to natural speaking and chewing ability
- Prevent remaining teeth from shifting position
- Custom created to match the shade of your existing teeth, so that they look natural
- Gives you back your smile
What is the procedure for getting a dental bridge?
First, patients are given a local anesthetic so that they are comfortable and do not feel any pain. When the patient is numb, the dentist works on the teeth on either side of the missing space to decrease their mass and prepare for the crowns that will fit over them.
Next, an impression is made so that your bridge will perfectly fit your teeth and mouth. You are fitted with a temporary bridge to protect your gums and teeth while the permanent bridge is created.
When the permanent bridge is ready, the temporary bridge will be replaced. The new bridge is fitted to your mouth, then cemented permanently into place.
Why is it important to replace missing teeth?
If not treated, the teeth surrounding the gap begin to shift inward, creating a chain reaction in the mouth. Teeth use adjoining teeth for support, and with one missing, they start to “fall”. The bite begins to change. This can result in problems with the entire jaw, leading to painful TMJ issues and often gum disease as well.