Brandyberry & Associates places dental bridges at our Thomasville practice serving the triad area of North Carolina.
A bridge, or fixed removable denture, can replace one or more missing teeth. It consists of a replacement tooth or teeth supported by dental implants or by crowns covering nearby natural teeth. Dental bridges are typically made of porcelain fused to metal (PFM) or ceramics, and are made to look like natural teeth. If you are missing teeth and would like to restore a complete, natural-looking appearance to your smile, find out more about dental bridges by contacting our Thomasville practice today.
The placement of dental bridges shares similarities with the placement of dental crowns. It is usually carried out over the course of two visits to our office. If your bridge is to be supported by the teeth adjacent to a gap, the dentist will remove portions of those teeth in preparation for the dental crowns that will hold the bridge in place. Next, the dentist will take a mold of the newly shaped teeth so that technicians can craft proportionate, natural-looking crowns. In the meantime, he will place temporary crowns over the adjacent teeth. If you choose for your bridge to be supported by a dental implant, no alteration of your natural teeth will be required; however, you will have to undergo dental implant surgery and a healing period of several months before the bridge can be attached.
During the subsequent visit, the dentist will test your crowns and bridge to make sure they fit properly, allowing you to bite down comfortably. Slight modifications to the crowns and bridge can be made in-office if needed. Once he has determined that the crowns and bridge are an accurate fit, he will cement the crowns to the adjacent teeth, which will hold your bridge in place.
On average, a dental bridge lasts about five to seven years. Bridges can become especially susceptible to failure if cavities develop on the supporting teeth. If you maintain a high level of oral hygiene and are careful to floss your teeth under the bridge, your restoration will last much longer.
The primary risks associated with a dental bridge lie with the dental implant or natural teeth supporting it. The placement of implants can result in bleeding, infection, or interference with nerves or sinuses (your dentist will take X-rays before surgery to ensure that your nerves and sinuses are not damaged during surgery). The bonding agent holding crowns in place can wash away while the crowns stay in place, which can facilitate the development of bacteria. This is not an urgent danger, but your dentist should be notified as soon as possible if your crowns feel loose or begin to emit an unusual odor.
A dental bridge can be an excellent way to restore a complete, natural look to your smile if you are missing one or more teeth. To find out whether a dental bridge is the right treatment for you, contact our Thomasville practice serving the triad area of North Carolina today.