Tooth loss can happen for a variety of reasons, including sudden trauma to the mouth, severe periodontal disease, or even tooth decay. Regardless of the reason you lost your tooth, however, it is understandable to want an attractive and durable replacement for it. Tooth loss not only negatively impacts your appearance, but it can also take a toll on your quality of life.
Biting and chewing may become difficult and painful, and you may also find that your remaining teeth are becoming loose because they are shifting and drifting due to the gap between your teeth. This can lead to further tooth loss. When we meet a patient who is missing a tooth and wants a long lasting and natural looking replacement for their lost tooth, we here at El Paso Modern Dentistry like to educate them about the benefits of a dental bridge.
What is a Dental Bridge and Why Would I Need One?A fixed dental bridge is a prosthetic tooth that can replace a missing tooth in your mouth. Unlike partials, which need to be removed to take care of them, a dental bridge is a permanent replacement for a missing tooth. You can take care of it just like you would take care of a natural tooth, and if you take good care of it (making sure you brush and floss around it), you can expect it to last you over a decade.
While there are four different main types of bridges, the most common type is the traditional dental bridge. A traditional bridge consists of at least one pontic (the part of the bridge that resembles a tooth) and typically two crowns. The dental crown, or the cap, go over your natural tooth. The crowns support the pontic, keeping it secure and sturdy in your mouth. A traditional bridge is normally made out of porcelain, or porcelain-fused-to-metal, which helps it look just like a real tooth.
Getting a dental bridge placed is an extremely safe and easy outpatient procedure. It has minimal discomfort to the patient and can be completed in just two appointments. During the first appointment, we will start by preparing the two teeth on either side of the space. These teeth will have a crown placed on them, so they will be shaped to accommodate the crown. Next, we will take a dental impression of your mouth. This impression will be sent to our lab to create your bridge. In the meanwhile, we will fit you with a temporary bridge.
How Long Until My Bridge Is Ready?It normally takes up to two weeks for your permanent dental bridge to be created at our lab. When it arrives back at our office, we will have you return for a final fitting. During this appointment, we will check the fit of the permanent bridge to ensure it is a good fit. Any adjustments to the bridge will be made at this time. We will test your bite to make sure it is comfortable, and once we are satisfied, we will finally attach the bridge with dental cement.
Dental bridges are a fantastic prosthetic option for many of our patients who want a realistic and reliable restoration for their missing tooth. To learn more about dental bridges, or to set up an appointment with us here at El Paso Modern Dentistry, please give us a call today at (915) 444-2660!