At Blue Summit Dental Group, we offer several tooth replacement appliances to restore your smile and improve your oral health. One of those appliances, dental bridges, literally bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth. A bridge is made up of two or more dental crowns and a pontic or false tooth. Bridges can be made from gold, other metal alloys, porcelain, or a combination of porcelain and metal. A bride can be supported by natural teeth, implants, or a combination of both.
The Bridge Procedure
A traditional bridge is supported by the adjacent teeth, also known as abutment teeth. During your first appointment, Dr. Ralph Becker will prepare the adjacent teeth. The preparation involves a reshaping of the tooth enamel to allow room for the crown. Dental crowns are tooth-shaped caps that cover the visible portion of a tooth, improve aesthetics, and provide structural support. Next, an impression of the reshaped teeth will be made and used to create a replica of your teeth. The model will be used by our dental laboratory to fabricate your final bridge. This process can take up to two weeks. In the meantime, Dr. Ralph Becker will give you a temporary bridge to protect the exposed teeth and gums.
Once your final bridge is complete, we can schedule your second appointment. Dr. Ralph Becker will remove your temporary bridge and ensure your final bridge is the necessary shape, size, and fit. To achieve a proper fit, Dr. Ralph Becker may need to make some final adjustments. Final adjustments may take several appointments to complete. Once we have achieved the proper fit, Dr. Ralph Becker will permanently cement your final bridge onto the abutment teeth.
Benefits of a Dental Bridge
If you opt to receive a dental bridge, we will be able to restore your smile. Bridges also restore your ability to chew, bite properly, and speak. A bridge may also help you maintain the shape of your face and prevent misalignments with your bite. When you lose one or more teeth, the remaining teeth will compensate for the open space and shift out of position. This can cause problems with your bite and the aesthetics of your smile.
When you replace a missing tooth with a bridge, you also properly distribute the forces of your bite. This will prevent future complications with your remaining, healthy teeth. With the proper care and maintenance, your dental bridge can last from five to 15 years. With excellent oral hygiene and regular appointments at Blue Summit Dental Group, it is not uncommon for a bridge to last well over 15 years!
Maintaining a Dental Bridge
Once you receive your bridge, Dr. Ralph Becker will give you a detailed set of maintenance instructions. The biggest part of maintaining a dental bridge is keeping your remaining teeth healthy and strong. Be sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day, preferably after meals. We also recommend flossing at least once a day. You may need to purchase a water pick or special floss that can easily be a thread between the bridge and your gums. Dr. Ralph Becker or our dental hygienist will demonstrate the proper brushing and flossing techniques before you leave the office. We will also review proper diet and nutrition to reduce your chances of developing tooth decay and gum disease.
Schedule Your Appointment
If you are missing one or more teeth, call (810) 658-9177, and schedule your appointment today!