Missing teeth leave more than just unsightly holes in your smile. They can also cause a whole host of oral health problems. If you’re missing a tooth, dentists Jeffrey Mitchell, DDS, and David Crosby, DMD, and their team of dental experts at Mitchell & Crosby Family Dentistry can restore the beauty and health of your smile with a high-quality dental bridge. To learn more about how Mitchell & Crosby Family Dentistry can use a bridge to improve your smile and protect your oral health, call the office today or book a visit online.
Bridges Q & A
What is a bridge?
A bridge is a classic dental solution to replace a missing tooth. Bridges are composed of a fake tooth, called a pontic, that’s held in place on either side by dental crowns. The crowns are affixed to the natural teeth next to your missing tooth, allowing the pontic to effectively bridge the space between your teeth.
If your surrounding teeth can’t support crowns, there are alternative bridges that the team can use to replace your tooth. A cantilever bridge has a crown attached to only one side of its pontic, while a Maryland bonded bridge is held in place by a wire framework that’s attached to the back of the neighboring teeth.
Why should I replace missing teeth?
Missing teeth harm more than just the appearance of your smile. They can also negatively affect your overall oral health.
A missing tooth leaves an empty space in your smile that your remaining teeth can drift into. This shifting can throw off your bite, which can lead to excessive wear-and-tear on your remaining teeth. It also puts you at a higher risk for developing TMJ disorder, a painful condition that affects your jaw joint.
What are the benefits of a bridge?
By replacing your missing tooth, bridges:
- Make your smile whole again
- Prevent your remaining teeth from falling out of alignment
- Properly distribute the force in your bite
- Maintain the shape of your face
Bridges also make it easier for you to properly eat and speak.
How do I get a bridge?
First, the team numbs your mouth with a local anesthetic and prepares the abutments for your bridge by shaving some of the enamel off of the teeth next to your missing tooth.
Once your abutments are prepared, the team takes an impression of your mouth. They send that impression off to a lab that designs and makes your bridge to fit seamlessly in your smile. The team fits you with a temporary bridge to wear while you wait for your permanent restoration to come back from the lab.
You then come back for a second appointment during which your permanent bridge is put in place. The team checks that the fit and bite are comfortable and bonds the bridge into place with dental cement. You leave the office able to chew, speak, and smile as if your missing tooth had just grown back.
Call Mitchell & Crosby Family Dentistry or book an appointment online and get your dental bridge today.