At Waterloo Dental Clinic, we understand that a missing tooth can have significant impacts on both your oral health and self-confidence. Dental Bridges are a reliable and commonly used solution to this problem, helping you restore your smile and dental functionality. In the following sections, we explore what Dental Bridges are, their benefits, and the process involved in placing one.
What are Dental Bridges?
A dental bridge acts as a bridge between gaps in your teeth caused by one or more missing teeth. It consists of two or more crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap — these two or more anchoring teeth are called abutment teeth — and a false tooth/teeth in between, referred to as “pontics”. Dental bridges can be supported by natural teeth or implants and can be fabricated from a variety of materials including porcelain, alloys, gold, or a combination of these materials.
How Dental Bridges Can Help
Missing teeth can lead to a number of issues, including shifting of adjacent teeth, poor alignment, difficulty chewing, jaw and tooth pain, and aesthetic concerns when speaking or smiling.
A dental bridge can address these problems effectively by:
Restoring Your Smile: A bridge fills the gap left by missing teeth, helping to restore the natural beauty of your smile.
Preventing Misalignment: By filling the gap, a bridge prevents the remaining teeth from shifting position and causing alignment issues.
Improving Chewing and Speaking: By replacing missing teeth, a bridge can improve your ability to chew food properly and can also correct speech issues caused by missing teeth.
Maintaining Facial Shape: Loss of teeth can sometimes cause changes in facial shape. A dental bridge can help maintain the natural shape of your face.
Getting a dental bridge typically involves a few visits, and the process is comfortable and straightforward.
During the first visit, Dr. Ash will prepare the abutment teeth, which involves recontouring these teeth by removing a portion of enamel to allow room for a crown to be placed over them. Next, impressions of your teeth are made, which serve as a model from which the bridge, pontic, and crowns will be made by a dental lab.
While the bridge is being made, you’ll receive a temporary bridge to wear to protect the exposed teeth and gums.
On your second visit, the temporary bridge is removed and the new porcelain or metal bridge is checked and adjusted, as necessary, to achieve a proper fit. The bridge is then cemented into place, providing a new, resilient addition to your smile.