Tooth loss, even just the loss of a single tooth, can have a major impact on your quality of life. Both your smile and your oral health are affected. Missing teeth make simple daily tasks more difficult. Eating becomes a challenge, and it is harder to thoroughly chew your food. When you cannot chew your food completely, digestion becomes more difficult, and your body has a harder time accessing essential nutrients. Food can get stuck in the space, increasing your risk for tooth decay and gum disease. Missing teeth can make speaking harder. Eventually, your jawbone begins to change shape. This leads to your adjacent teeth shifting from their natural positions, throwing off your bite, leading to jaw pain and uneven tooth wear. At Janice K. Pliszak DDS, we can restore your missing teeth with dental bridges.
What is a Dental Bridge?
A bridge is a dental restoration that is designed to replace up to three consecutive missing teeth. It bridges the gap, filling in space. A bridge is one solid piece, frequently made from ceramic, that consists of replacement teeth (called pontic teeth) surrounded on both sides by a dental crown. This is known as a fixed bridge and is the most common type. The crowns anchor on to the teeth adjacent to space in your dentition (abutment teeth), holding the restoration securely in place. It is non-removable, affixed to the teeth with dental cement.
Dental Bridge Placement
Placing your dental bridge is done similarly to placing dental crowns and takes two visits. On your first visit, we prepare your abutment teeth. Done under a local anesthetic, we remove a portion of the enamel from each tooth. This is done to ensure that your bridge fits in perfectly amongst the rest of your teeth, providing a natural appearance. After the teeth are prepared, we take an impression of your mouth. The impression is sent to a lab and used to design and create your custom bridge.
It often takes approximately two weeks before your dental bridge is ready for placement. While you wait, you are provided with a temporary bridge, which will protect the abutment teeth and restore some of the functions of the missing teeth. When the bridge is ready, it is checked for fit, and then cemented into place.
Benefits of a Dental Bridge
Dental bridges offer numerous benefits:
If you have experienced tooth loss, getting those missing teeth replaced as soon as possible is important for restoring your smile, and keeping your mouth healthy. Call Janice K. Pliszak DDS today at (315) 800-5020 for more information.