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Fixed Dentistry: A Prosthodontist Answers FAQs About Dental Bridges
Dental bridges have been an option in fixed dentistry for many years. They have been used successfully by prosthodontists to replace a missing tooth. The bridge works by anchoring onto the teeth on both sides of the gap left by the missing tooth. Continue reading to find answers to common questions about dental bridges.
What is a dental bridge?
A dental bridge is a restoration option for replacing missing teeth. The bridge can replace one or more teeth lost in a row. They can be supported with crowns placed over healthy teeth or dental implants. Dental bridges help restore the function and appearance of the smile. They can make eating and speaking more comfortable and prevent other teeth from shifting.
What is the process of making dental bridges?
Dental bridges are created in a dental laboratory and are made from porcelain or porcelain-fused-to-metal. The dentist will take impressions of the patient’s smile and forward it to the dental lab with instructions on materials. After production is complete, the dentist will check the fitting and place the bridge with dental cement.
What are the drawbacks of dental bridges?
To prepare the abutment teeth for a dental bridge, the dentist will need to file down part of the tooth’s structure to make room for the crown. This is acceptable if the affected tooth has decay or has have a previous dental restoration. If the teeth are in good condition, cutting away the enamel to place the bridge is not an ideal decision. On the bright side, the dental crowns used to cover the teeth are strong and natural-looking.
How many dental appointments are required to complete the dental bridge process?
Two dental appointments are usually required after the dentist decides that a dental bridge would be a good treatment option. This may entail taking X-rays to assess the health of the teeth and bone. After developing a treatment plan, the dental bridge process takes two dental visits. The first appointment is for teeth preparation and impression taking. The second appointment happens about two weeks later, during which the permanent bridge is cemented into place.
How long will the dental bridges last?
If patients take care of the fixed dentistry restoration, it can last as long as natural teeth. The porcelain used is as hard as the natural tooth enamel and is resistant to bacteria and moisture. If the dental bridge gets damaged, patients can visit the dental office for repairs.
What are the maintenance requirements for dental bridges?
Patients can care for the dental bridge like they would maintain their natural teeth. It is critical to remember that poor oral hygiene can cause tooth loss, gum infection or deterioration of the jawbone, all of which can affect the stability of the bridge. Therefore, it is vital to care for the teeth by brushing and flossing twice daily and going to the dentist regularly for checkups and dental cleanings.
If you have a missing tooth, contact a prosthodontist today to discuss options in fixed dentistry such as dental bridges. They will also answer any additional questions you may have about the procedure.
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