When you are missing one or more teeth, it’s important to replace them not just for aesthetic reasons but because over time the neighbouring teeth can shift into the gap causing alignment and bite problems. Missing teeth can also make you more vulnerable to gum disease. Tooth bridges, combined with dental crowns, are an effective method for replacing missing teeth.
How Do Dental Bridges Work?
Dental bridges are cemented to teeth (or dental implants) which neighbour the gap caused by a missing tooth or teeth. These are known as abutments and work to hold the bridge in place. A replacement tooth is attached to the crowns which cover the abutments, filling the gap and preserving your alignment and bite.
Dental bridges can deliver several benefits, including:
- Restoring the aesthetics of your smile by eliminating the look of unsightly gaps
- Preserving your ability to chew and eat without limitations
- Preventing your teeth from shifting out of position into gaps and therefore maintaining the shape of your face
- Preserving your speech pronunciation
How Do Dental Bridges Differ From Dental Implants?
For tooth bridges to be able to effectively replace a missing tooth, the teeth directly adjacent to the gap must be healthy enough to support the bridge. If this is not the case then dental implants will be the best option as they are implanted and do not place strain on other teeth. Dental bridges usually last for 10-15 years with good oral hygiene.
Getting a tooth bridge fitted is a procedure requiring several appointments. At the first appointment, preparations and impressions are made for the permanent bridge, and a temporary bridge is fitted to protect the teeth and gums. The permanent bridge is fitted at the second appointment, and subsequent appointments may be required to ensure the fit is comfortable and ideal for your bite and framework. The final stage is to cement the bridge into place.
If you are anxious about the dentist and dental procedures, our services include several options to help you stay calm and comfortable during your appointments. For more information visit our Drift Away Anxiety Management and Sleep Dentistry pages. We do everything possible to help reduce your dental anxiety, so talk to us about your concerns.