Dental Bridges

Dental bridges are what close the gap between two teeth, which is normally caused by one or more missing teeth. The teeth on each side of the gap (or abutment teeth) are anchored with a false tooth in between (also known as a pontic).

How Do I Know If I Need It / Symptoms?

Dental bridges are one of the options to replace lost teeth in the following cases:

  • A Small Number Of Teeth Are Missing
  • The Teeth On Either Side Of The Gap Are Strong Enough To Hold The Bridge
  • These Anchors Have Good Gum Health

What Can Happen If I Don't Get It Fixed, Left Untreated?

Dental bridges are important for several reasons:

  • To Reduce The Pressure On The Other Teeth
  • To Reduce The Chances Of Getting Jaw Pain Through Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ)
  • To Prevent Changes To The Bite Caused By Gap Movement Within Your Mouth
  • To Reduce The Potential For Dental Decay And Gum Problems From Other Teeth
  • To Help With Everyday Tasks, Such As Chewing Or Speaking
  • For Possible Cosmetic Reasons, Such As Filling In Gaps That Are Easily Shown

What Are My Options, If Any?

There are three main types of dental bridges:

  • Traditional Bridges: When There Is A Tooth On Either Side Of The Missing Tooth, With A Pontic In Between
  • Cantilever Bridges: When There Are Teeth On Only One Side Of The Gap
  • Maryland Bonded Bridges: Made Of Metal Or Porcelain Wings Often On Just One Side Of The Bridge That Are Bonded To Your Existing Teeth

Pontics for bridges can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of either of these materials.

What Does The Procedure Look Like?

During the first visit, the adjacent teeth are prepared. The dentist will remove a portion of enamel to make enough room for a crown to be placed over them. Impressions of the teeth are then made to form a model for the bridge and crowns. You will wear a temporary bridge to protect the exposed teeth until the official bridge is completed.

At your second visit, your temporary bridge will be removed and the new long-term bridge will be checked and adjusted to ensure the fit of the framework and bite. Once the bridge is ready, it is cemented into place.

What Is The Recovery Time?

The recovery from getting a traditional dental bridge usually only lasts a few days. You may feel some minor gum pain after the bridge is in place, but that usually goes away within a few days. It may take some time to get used to eating with your new bridge. Avoid hard or chewy foods and cut foods into small pieces for the first few days.

With good oral hygiene and regular checkups, dental bridges can last between 10 to 15 years.

Am I A Candidate?

If you would like to find out if dental bridges are right for you, please call our Elmwood Park office at 708-456-1188 to schedule a consultation.

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