Why a Dental Bridge May Be Your Best Tooth Replacement Option
A dental bridge may restore the aesthetics and functionality of your smile.
Tooth loss is common. Statistics show that by age 50, the average person has already lost 12 teeth. And this tooth loss is linked to other health problems, like jawbone deterioration. If you’re dealing with these complications and are anxious about your missing teeth, you’re not alone.
One of the popular options we offer is a dental bridge, or fixed partial denture. Bridges do exactly what their name implies; they bridge the gap between one or more missing teeth. The bridge is made up of a set of artificial teeth called pontics. These can be made from many different materials.
If you’re replacing back teeth, metal alloys or gold are good options for their strength and durability, but if you’re getting your front teeth done, porcelain is always used because the color can be matched to the shade of your natural teeth so your bridge beautifully blends in.
The Process of Placing a Bridge
The teeth next to the open space serve as anchors for the bridge. These anchoring teeth are referred to as abutment teeth and will need to be crowned. Crowning involves lightly shaving the tooth on each side so the crown can fit over top. These crowns are then attached to the other pontics.
If you are considering whitening your teeth, it would be wise to discuss that with your dental team before receiving a bridge because your pontics cannot be whitened after they’re placed.
Am I a good candidate for a dental bridge?
Like with other restorative procedures, your dental team will evaluate your particular needs to find out if dental bridges are the best option for you. In general, though, a dental bridge requires strong abutment teeth that are well anchored and ready to support the neighboring teeth.
You’ll also need to be good at brushing and flossing regularly and taking good care of your oral health. With a dental bridge, you must keep the area under it clean to prevent gum disease from developing.
The Benefits of Bridges
Dental bridges are considered one of the fastest tooth replacement options. The process consists of two 90-minute visits, while implants, for example, tend to take six to 12 months from start to finish.
Some people prefer bridges over dentures because they prevent some of the problems that are commonly associated with dentures, like sliding, breaking, and clicking. Unlike dentures, bridges stay in your mouth all the time; you don’t need to remember to put it in each morning or worry about it falling out.
A dental bridge allows your face to maintain its natural structure and shape after tooth loss and will keep your teeth from shifting out of position. It also evenly distributes the powerful forces required for chewing, allowing you to eat properly again.
People also love the aesthetic benefits of bridges. Having a full, beautiful smile can increase your self-esteem and confidence. Imagine not only being able to chew properly again, but also having the freedom to speak and smile without wondering what others are thinking. Dental bridges can give you the freedom to do the things you love again.
Other Tooth Replacement Options
Dental bridges are not a solution for everyone. If your team at Oxley decides that dental bridges are not right for you, they will discuss other options with you. Some other options include dental implants and partial dentures. Dental implants are becoming increasingly popular because they’re permanent, strong, and serve as a tooth root, helping to maintain jawbone density.
Partial dentures are different from partial fixed dentures because they include artificial gums, whereas bridges only include replacement teeth. If your dentition is poor and your dentist predicts you’ll lose more teeth in the future, then a dental bridge may not be the best option. Partial dentures also tend to be the cheapest option.
We want to see you smiling your biggest.
If you are wondering what kind of restorations may be best for you to replace your missing teeth, talk to us. Doctor Naik and the team are committed to helping you decide on the tooth replacement option that is just right for your specific needs.
If you want to make an informed decision about what’s perfect for you, reach out to us for a consultation.