Do you have lost or missing teeth? Are your missing teeth affecting your bite? Dental bridges may be the right treatment for you. At Perfect Smiles, we offer dental bridge treatment to patients with multiple missing teeth in Bensalem, PA. Bridges are dental prosthetics that can restore a row of consecutive missing teeth. Although dental bridges can be fixed or removable, we will often recommend fixed bridges for longer-lasting restorative dental treatment.
Traditional Dental Bridges
Traditional dental bridges can be removable or fixed. They rely on natural teeth at each end of the bridge span to support the dental bridge. Removable bridges must be removed when you’re eating, and you must also remove them to clean them properly. We teach you how to floss and clean around the bridge properly with a fixed bridge. Special tools may be needed so that you can clean the area completely.
Traditional bridges are cheaper, and you can get your restoration quicker. But they put a lot of stress on your anchor teeth. Anchor teeth wear down quicker and are more likely to experience damage or tooth decay. In some instances, we place dental crowns on the anchor teeth to fortify them. But your natural teeth still have to be filed down to fit those crowns. You still have to lose natural tooth structure.
Because the tooth root is lost, your jawbone continues to change and deteriorate as the years go by. The fit of your bridge will change, too, whether it’s fixed or removable. It’s likely that we’ll have to readjust or replace your dental bridge at least once in the years to come. Some patients require multiple adjustments or replacements throughout their lifetime.
Implant-supported Dental Bridges
Dental implants take on the stress of supporting the bridge with an implant-supported bridge instead of natural teeth. A surgeon places implant posts in the jawbone to support the restoration. A piece called an abutment connects the implant post to the final bridge restoration. This bridge is fixed and stays in your mouth all of the time. You can take care of this bridge the same way you would your natural teeth.
Implant-supported dentures do take longer than traditional ones. This is because implant placement is a surgical procedure. Once the implants are placed, they need around 3-6 months to heal and fuse with the jawbone. We usually fit you with a temporary restoration as this happens. We want to ensure that the implants fuse properly and give you the stability that they’re known for.
While they take longer to get, they also last longer, too. Implants are the only option that replaces your tooth root. The bone deterioration that normally occurs with tooth loss won’t happen. They’re a lifetime restoration. You shouldn’t have to worry about needing a replacement or readjustment to your dental bridge.
Dental Bridge Treatment
We will begin by preparing their abutment teeth for patients who choose a traditional bridge. These teeth are used to support the bridge prosthetic. We will remove a small portion of the enamel from the natural teeth to prepare them for dental crowns. Then, we take scans of teeth to create the crowns and false teeth. Finally, we will attach the dental restoration.
Implant-secured bridges have a longer treatment time than traditional bridges, but they provide more stability and longevity to the prosthetic. We work with a local surgeon to place implants. The dental implants are surgically placed in key areas of the mouth to support the prosthetic. After a healing period of 3 to 6 months, we will attach the bridge, which we create from dental scans of the mouth.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does it take to get a dental bridge?
In most cases, a traditional dental bridge requires two appointments. During the first visit, your dentist will prepare the adjacent teeth and take impressions to create the bridge. Lab technicians will fabricate the actual bridge in a dental lab; this can take about two weeks. At the second appointment, the dentist will check your bridge to see if it fits and cement it in place. The entire process usually spans 2-3 weeks.
Who is a good candidate for a dental bridge?
A good candidate for a dental bridge is someone who has one or more missing teeth with healthy teeth on either side of the gap. These adjacent teeth serve as anchors for the bridge. Additionally, the patient should have good oral hygiene habits. The success and longevity of the bridge partly depend on the health of the surrounding teeth and gums.
What foods should you avoid with a bridge?
If you have a dental bridge, you should avoid sticky and chewy foods. These foods can cause damage to the bridge. Additionally, you should avoid hard foods like popcorn kernels and hard candies. Avoiding these foods will ensure the longevity of your bridge. You should also reduce your consumption of nuts and chips. These foods can stick in between teeth and create problems with the dental bridge.
How soon can you eat after a bridge?
After getting a dental bridge, it’s best to wait until the local anesthesia wears off before eating. This may take a few hours. Once the numbness subsides, you can start with soft foods and gradually progress to a normal diet over the next few days. You can slowly reintroduce harder foods as you adjust to your bridge.
Do teeth bridges fall out?
Only in rare cases do teeth bridges become loose or fall out. This can happen due to factors such as poor oral hygiene and inadequate support from surrounding teeth. Your bridge could also become loose or fall out due to underlying decay, inadequate dental cement, wear and tear, or trauma. To prevent a bridge from falling out, maintain good oral hygiene and visit your dentist regularly for check-ups. If a dental bridge does become loose or falls out, contact your dentist immediately for evaluation and repair.
Can you tell if someone has a dental bridge?
It is often difficult to identify if someone has a dental bridge. Dental labs design bridges to blend with the surrounding teeth. A skilled dentist will ensure the bridge looks natural and integrates into the patient’s smile. However, dental professionals will more likely detect slight differences in color, shape, or texture. The goal of a dental bridge is to make it as indistinguishable as possible from natural teeth.
Schedule a Dental Appointment
Do you want to restore lost or missing teeth? Do you want to replace an old bridge with an implant-secured bridge? Request a dental consultation with our team on our website or call 215-770-1081. Feel free to ask us about your restorative options for missing teeth. We will always be happy to help.