Missing teeth not only affect the aesthetics of your smile but also your oral and overall health. You should replace missing teeth as soon as possible because of the following reasons:
- A smile full of gaps is unsightly.
- Missing teeth make one conscious while smiling in social gatherings. Thus, the self- esteem and confidence are hampered.
- Over time, the spaces left by missing teeth cause the neighboring teeth to move towards the open space. This leads to orthodontic issues and causes jaw deterioration.
- The facial contour loses its support and starts to droop. This adds years to the face and makes one look old.
- Gaps between teeth make it difficult to chew food. One may suffer from malnutrition due to missing teeth.
- Gaps between teeth also make it difficult for people to speak properly. People with missing teeth are prone to mispronouncing certain words.
What are dental bridges?
Dental bridges are prosthetic devices that replace missing teeth. They remain true to their name and bridge the gap between two teeth that occurs due to tooth loss. A dental bridge consists of a false tooth attached to dental crowns on one or both sides. The false tooth fills the gap left by missing teeth and the crowns anchor themselves on teeth present adjacent to the gap. Such teeth are called abutment teeth and they help in holding the bridge in place. The false tooth is called a pontic and it can be made from gold, porcelain, ceramic, or a combination of these materials. Dental bridges are of 4 types:
1. Traditional Bridges
Traditional bridges have crowns attached to both sides of the pontic. Hence, adjacent teeth on both the sides are filed to receive a crown on them. Traditional bridges are sturdy and the most commonly used.
2. Cantilever Bridges
Cantilever bridges are just like traditional bridges but have crowns attached to only one side of the pontic. They are used when a patient has teeth on only side of the gap.
3. Maryland Bridges
Maryland bridges provide a conservative alternative to traditional bridges. They consist of a pontic attached to a metal frame that is cemented on to the back of adjacent teeth. Unlike traditional bridges, Maryland bridges don’t require the adjacent teeth to filed and preserve their natural structure.
4. Implant Supported Bridges
Implant supported bridges are held in place by dental implants. Dental implants are titanium posts that are surgically installed in the jawbone and act as roots for missing teeth. Once in position, they are attached to a bridge. They are the most durable and provide the best solution. Also, implant-supported bridges are used when a patient loses multiple teeth.
How are dental bridges placed?
Dental bridges can be easily placed in two dental visits.
First visit :
During the consultation, a comprehensive examination is performed to check your oral and overall health. X-rays are used to determine the need to receive dental bridges. Dental bridges can be used to restore one or more missing teeth.
b. Treatment Plan
If you are in good oral and overall health, your dentist will create a custom treatment plan according to your requirements. The treatment plan gives a detailed insight of the various stages of the procedure and also highlights the desired results.
c. Tooth Preparation
The teeth present next to the gap left my missing teeth are anesthetized. Then, they are filed down to receive crowns over them.
Digital prints of your mouth will be recorded and sent to a dental lab. Using the impressions, a lab technician will custom design a bridge to match the shape, size, and color of your natural teeth.
e. Placement of a temporary bridge
A pre-fabricated temporary bridge will be installed in the mouth to protect the prepared teeth.
Second visit :
a. Placement of the final bridge
After your dentist receives the final bridge from the dental lab, you will be called for a second visit. The dentist will then remove the temporary bridge and replace it with the final bridge. The final bridge is permanently cemented in place.
We at Inspire Smiles Dental employ the most advanced technology to treat dental ailments with great care and precision. Our entire team is immensely dedicated to looking after our patients’ needs with exceptional compassion and caution. Whether you are looking for dental restorations or cosmetic enhancements, Inspire Smiles Dental is a one-stop for all your dental issues and ailments. Book an appointment with us at (925) 833-9500 or visit our office in 7739 Amador Valley Blvd, Dublin, CA 94568.