Missing teeth not only cause you to lose confidence in your smile but may also cause you to miss out on key nutrition as you can’t eat all the foods you need to.
Luckily, your McAllen dentists at Heroes Dental offer the restorative and cosmetic dentistry solutions you need to help resolve your dental concerns. One of those solutions is known as dental bridges.
What are dental bridges?
The procedure to place a dental bridge is used when one tooth — or more — is lost. It is also a common solution when teeth become loose as a result of a missing tooth.
A dental bridge is a prosthesis that replaces missing teeth to bring back proper oral function to patients. An artificial tooth, also known as a “pontic,” uses surrounding healthy teeth as support, securing the bridge to the patient’s jaw.
Dental bridges are natural-looking, easy to install and maintain, durable, and can last for years if properly taken care of.
How will a dental bridge benefit me?
Aside from the obvious cosmetic benefits of installing a dental bridge, there are plenty of other advantages patients receive by undergoing this affordable procedure:
- 1. Dental bridges create a uniform smile by eliminating gaps left over from missing teeth.
- 2. Dental bridges help relieve biting and chewing problems, reinforcing your ability to eat all of the proper foods that are important for the health of your teeth and your overall health as well.
- 3. Dental bridges eliminate speech-impacting problems caused by missing teeth.
What types of dental bridges are available?
There are four types of dental bridges that our skilled McAllen family dentists can provide you or your loved one with:
- 1. Traditional Dental Bridges – These are the most commonly used types of bridges (and those which we have been referring to throughout this blog). This type of dental bridge consists of one or more pontics that are held in place on both sides by dental crowns, a.k.a. abutments. There, they are cemented to adjacent teeth in an effort to seal the gap.
- 2. Cantilever Bridges – This type of dental bridge is much like the traditional dental bridge. However, the pontic only needs to bind with one abutment instead of two. This procedure is reserved for when there is only one natural tooth next to the gap where the bridge can be secured.
- 3. Maryland Bonded Bridges – A Maryland bridge, also known as a resin-bonded bridge, uses a metal framework to seal the gap with a pontic and secures the bridge in place by bonding it to the backs of your natural adjacent teeth.
- 4. Implant-Supported Bridges – These tend to have crowns installed into the jaw where teeth once were. Instead of having support come from natural adjacent teeth, implant-supported bridges, as the name suggests, are supported by dental implants. Normally, one implant per gap—or missing tooth—is installed.
Each one of these types of dental bridges has a different procedure and different duration to install them. Contact one of our Heroes Dental offices in south Texas to schedule an appointment and learn more about which option would be best for you.
What to Expect Before/During/After the Procedure
Most bridgework procedures often take approximately two trips to the dental office in order to complete.
On the first trip to your Heroes Dental office, your dentist will examine your gap and adjacent teeth. Once the examination is complete and your options explained to you, abutment teeth will be slightly altered to ensure that the bridge will have room inside the mouth. Crowns will likely need to be created to properly secure the bridge in place.
Next, your dentist may create a 3D model of your teeth with a putty-like material or use a digital scanner to inspect the teeth. A digital scanner is typically used to help the dentists get a feel of how they should design the crowns to fit over your abutment teeth and gap.
During this first visit, you will be given a temporary bridge while your permanent bridge is being made. It is during the second visit that the permanent dental bridge will be cemented in place.
After all is said and done, it may take a little bit of time to get accustomed to the feel of having a new dental bridge against your cheeks, lips, and tongue. In the long run, however, it’ll be well worth smile and health to get the bridge in place.
Get your oral health back on track in 2019 by visiting Heroes Dental.
Dental bridges give our patients back more than a perfect smile. They can enable oral function to help you live a healthier life.
Trust in our McAllen dentists at Heroes Dental to help you gain back your confident smile. Contact us at any of our locations to set up your next dental checkup today.