Missing one or more of your teeth can not only prevent you from achieving a bright, white smile, but can inhibit your oral health as well. If you suffer from tooth loss, then consulting with a dentist about a dental bridge as soon as possible is ideal. Dr. Vaishali Patel DDS has helped a number of tooth loss or decay patients in her many years of practicing dentistry, and can give you the brilliant smile that you’ve always wanted.
What is a dental bridge exactly?
A dental bridge is a non-removable appliance that can replace missing teeth. There are many types of bridges, and you and your dentist will discuss the which bridge is ideal for your needs. The “traditional bridge” is the most popular bridge and is typically made of porcelain that is fused to metal. Porcelain fixed bridges are popular because they most closely resemble your natural teeth, both in shape and color. This particular type of bridge consists to two individual crowns that go over anchoring teeth (which are known as abutment teeth) and are attached to artificial teeth (referred to as pontics). This fills the gap that has been created by a missing tooth or teeth.
Reasons for a fixed bridge:
*Fill spaces caused by missing teeth.
*Helps to maintain natural facial shape.
*Prevents natural teeth from drifting out of position.
*Restores patient’s ability to chew and speak naturally.
*Enhances your smile.
*Enables you to Upgrade from a temporary or removable partial denture to a more permanent dental appliance.
What does the fixed bridge treatment process involve?
Getting a bridge will typically require about two office visits. After the teeth are numbed, the dentist will prepare the two anchoring teeth by removing a small layer of the enamel to make space for a crown. Next, an impression (mold) is created and sent to a dental laboratory, where the bridge will be made. Your dentist may decide to place a temporary bridge that you can wear until your next appointment.
At your second office visit, the permanent bridge will be carefully examined and adjusted, before it is cemented to achieve a snug and comfortable fit. Your dentist may decide to only temporarily cement the bridge in place, in order to allow your teeth and tissue grow accustomed to the new bridge. Your new dental bridge will be permanently affixed at a later appointment.
The dentist will provide you with care instructions at your final dental bridge appointment. Brushing, flossing and regular dental exams will help to extend the life of your new permanent bridge.
The Benefits of Dental Bridges.
If you should lose a tooth or even multiple teeth, the teeth that remain in place are greatly impacted. Those teeth will eventually shift, and can even leave their sockets in order to fill the empty space. Therefore, dental concerns can be a result, such as an incorrect bite, the inability to to chew while eating, or the development of wrinkles and fine lines caused by the alteration of facial features. Dental bridges help to fill the gap caused by a missing tooth, and can remedy a number of dental issues.
How are dental bridges put into place?
Before the dentist can place the new dental bridge, she will make sure that the remaining teeth which are surrounding the gap are healthy enough to support the bridge. If she finds that there is a concern, she will help to strengthen the tooth by using a special build up agent. The dentist will then shape the existing teeth before taking a mold. This impression is sent away to a lab, where your custom dental bridges will be created to your specifications. About 2 to 3 weeks later you will be asked to return for a follow up appointment, at which time your new bridge will be fitted and the dentist will verify that they are ideal for your needs. If you like both the look and the feel the dentist will then cement the new dental bridge into place.
Should I get a Dental Bridge?
Patients who are good dental bridge candidates are those who have a missing tooth or teeth that are surrounded on both sides by healthy, strong teeth. Also, if the teeth surrounding the gap are able to be treated, then you may be an ideal candidate for dental bridges. Patients who are not well suited for dental bridges are: children who have not yet developed their permanent teeth, as well as patients who are missing numerous teeth that happen to be surrounded by decaying or unhealthy teeth.
Please call (310) 549-2400 or email us today to schedule your consultation with Dr. Vaishali Patel DDS. She and her caring staff have years of experience in handling cases in which patients are missing one or more teeth, and have helped them to take back their brilliant smiles once more with dental bridges. If you are missing teeth and would like to have a smile that you can be proud to show off again, then please don’t hesitate to call to find out how Dr. Patel can help you to look your very best and improve your oral health.