Are you considering getting dental bridges? If so, it's important to know all the facts before making a decision. Here's everything you need to know about dental bridges and how this type of dental restoration works.
What are dental bridges?
Dental bridges are false teeth that are used to fill in gaps left by missing teeth. They are typically made from porcelain or ceramic and are attached to the natural teeth on either side of the gap.
What are the benefits of bridges?
Dental bridges are an important tool for restoring your smile after tooth loss and have many benefits, including:
- Appearance. Bridges can give you back your smile and help you feel more confident about your appearance.
- Chewing and speaking. Bridges can help you chew and speak properly by filling in the gaps left by missing teeth.
- Preventing shifted teeth. Dental bridges help keep your natural teeth from shifting out of place due to the gaps left by tooth loss.
- Maintaining facial shape. Bridges can help support the muscles in your face and prevent your cheeks from sinking in due to tooth loss.
Additionally, bridges can prevent gum disease and further tooth decay. They fill in gaps where food and bacteria could otherwise collect and cause damage.
What are the types of bridges?
There are three main types of dental bridges:
- Fixed bridge. This type of bridge is cemented into place and can only be removed by a dentist.
- Removable bridge. As the name suggests, removable bridges can be removed and put back in place by the patient.
- Cantilever bridge. This type of bridge is attached to teeth on only one side of the gap.
The type of bridge that your dentist uses depends on the location of the gap and the health of the surrounding teeth.
How are bridges placed?
Bridges are typically placed by a dentist or an oral surgeon. The first step is to prepare the natural teeth on either side of the gap by removing a small amount of enamel. This creates space for the dental crowns that will be used to support the bridge.
Next, impressions of the teeth are taken and sent to a dental lab where the bridge will be made. In the meantime, a temporary bridge may be placed. Once the permanent bridge is ready, it will be fitted into place and checked for proper fit. If everything looks good, the bridge will be cemented into place.
If you're considering getting dental bridges, talk to your dentist to see if this is the right option for you.