What is a dental bridge?
A dental bridge functions by "bridging" the gap between two healthy teeth or dental implants, helping to restore both the function and the appearance of the smile as a whole as a result.
You're probably wondering, "How does that work?" Read on as our Victoria dentists explain more about the procedure to you.
While being assessed at your appointment, your dentist will talk to you about your options for replacing missing teeth. In addition to a dental bridge, dentures and dental implants may also be considered.
Based on your oral health needs and financial considerations, your dentist will make recommendations for treatment. If you decide on a dental bridge, the following steps will be taken to begin your treatment:
Preparation & Temporary Bridge Placement
Dental bridges are attached to the healthy teeth on either side of a gap in order to fill the space. First, your dentist shapes these 'abutment' teeth so that they're properly positioned for the placement of the bridge. A local anesthetic will be administered to ensure that you are as comfortable as possible throughout this procedure.
Once the dentist has completed the shaping process, an impression of the shaped teeth will be taken and sent to a dental laboratory, along with a sample representing the colour of your teeth. Technicians will construct the bridge on the basis of the impressions made there. The colour, size, and shape of your new prosthetic teeth will be closely matched to your natural teeth.
You may be provided with a temporary bridge to wear so that you are comfortable while your dental bridge is being made.
Permanent Bridge Placement
Once your new, custom-made dental bridge has been completed, it can be installed by your dentist. A local anesthetic will be administered during the procedure to ensure your comfort.
The temporary bridge will be taken off by the dentist, who will then carefully clean the teeth surrounding the gap. When the new, permanent dental bridge is attached to the abutment teeth, dental cement will usually be used to hold it in place.
Once this is completed, the dentist will show you what the bridge looks like in your mouth and ask you to practice biting down with it a few times before completing the procedure. At first, you should expect it to feel a little strange, but this will pass quickly.
Once your bridge has been installed, you can take care of it in the same way that you would take care of your natural teeth. Your dental bridge can last for many years if you maintain it properly with regular brushing and flossing, as well as regular visits to the dentist for cleanings and checkups.