All of your teeth play an important role in speaking, chewing, and maintaining the proper alignment of other teeth. Tooth loss doesn’t necessarily have to occur as you age, but if you do lose teeth they must be replaced to maintain the proper function of your mouth. Fortunately, there are options for correcting tooth loss.
Dental Bridge Options
A bridge — a device used to replace missing teeth — attaches artificial teeth to adjacent natural teeth, called abutment teeth. Bridges that are permanently attached are called fixed bridges.
Fixed bridges are applied by either placing crowns on the abutment teeth or by bonding the artificial teeth directly to the abutment teeth.
What exactly is a bridge?
A bridge is a device that fills the gap where teeth are absent. Fixed bridges are bonded into place and can only be removed by a dental professional.
If you’re missing one or more teeth, you may be aware of their importance to your appearance and dental health. Your teeth work together for many daily functions from eating to speaking. With missing teeth, it’s difficult to do these things. Missing teeth can and should be replaced. Fixed bridges are a great way to restore your dental health and appearance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Oral functionality and appearance are important reasons for wearing a bridge. A bridge helps support your lips and cheeks. The loss of a tooth may cause your mouth to sink and your face to look older.
Dental health is the most important reason for a bridge. Teeth were designed to complement each other. Unusual stresses are placed on the gums and other oral tissues when teeth are missing, causing a number of potentially harmful disorders.
Increased risk of gum disease has proven to be one of the worst side effects of missing teeth and can be minimized with a bridge.
Missing teeth can cause speech disorders as they are used to make many of the sounds we use to speak clearly.
The attachment procedure usually takes two or three appointments to complete. At the first appointment, Dr. Beall will prepare the teeth for the bridge. Since the bridge must be fabricated very precisely to ensure correct bite and to match the opposing tooth, impressions of the teeth are taken and sent to a dental lab where the bridge will be constructed to your doctor’s specifications. Fixed bridges are typically cemented to the natural teeth next to the space left by the missing tooth. A pontic (false tooth) replaces the lost tooth. Crowns, which are cemented onto the natural teeth, provide support for the bridge.