A lost tooth, whether through decay, injury or accident, can affect your ability to eat or speak and can also have a significant effect on your confidence, particularly if the loss is immediately visible. Replacing missing teeth is always recommended as having a gap places additional strain on the teeth on either side and increases you chances of suffering from decay or gum disease.
If the teeth on each side of the gap are strong and the bone between is sound, a dental bridge may be the best way of replacing the missing tooth. Unlike dentures, a bridge is a permanent fixture and can only be fitted or removed by a dentist. Made of metal, porcelain or a combination of the two, a bridge is bonded to adjacent teeth to hold firmly it in place. Regardless of how it is made, a bridge will also feature gum-colored plastic and natural looking teeth. The replacement teeth themselves made be made of porcelain, gold or a combination of metals.
As a bridge depends almost entirely on existing teeth for support, it is hugely important to maintain good levels of oral hygiene after a bridge has been fitted in order to prevent any problems from occurring in the future. With proper care a dental bridge can last up to 15 years but after that time it will need to be replaced. If all your teeth have been lost, instead of replacing them all with implants a dentist may opt to insert a few implants and then use them as a foundation for a dental bridge.
Having a bridge fitted will require several visits to the dentist as the adjacent teeth first need to be prepared before the bridge itself can be fitted. Be aware that parts of your existing healthy teeth may have to be removed in order to fit the replacement crowns.
Please contact us at 409-835-6257 if you have questions about dental bridges or need to schedule an appointment. We look forward to seeing you!