Losing teeth, even just one, has a rather large impact on your oral health and your quality of life. Eating your favorite foods become difficult. Speaking becomes a chore, and it is difficult for others to understand you. Your adjacent teeth may begin to shift, throwing off your natural bite. At National Dental Upper East Side, we can restore missing teeth with a dental bridge.
A dental bridge essentially “bridges” the gap left behind by one (usually up to 3) missing teeth. The replacement tooth (or teeth) is surrounded on both sides by crowns, which will attach to adjacent healthy teeth, or abutment teeth. Once in place, your bridge will restore your smile and the functions of your teeth.
Placement of a dental bridge is fairly similar to placing dental crowns and takes two visits to complete. On your first visit with us, your abutment teeth are prepared. This involves trimming down, or removing, some of the enamel of your teeth, which allows the bridge to fit comfortably in place. It also ensures a natural appearance. Once your teeth are prepared, we take an impression, which is sent to a lab, along with information on the color of your teeth.
The lab creates your custom bridge. It can take up to 2 weeks for it to be ready, so a temporary restoration will be provided for you in the meantime. When the crown is ready, we will place it. The crown will be checked for proper fit before we cement it in place.
Bridges don’t require much special care. However, just because the material of your bridge cannot suffer decay does not mean that they should go unattended to. They can still collect plaque and should be cared for just like the rest of your natural teeth. This means that you should continue to brush twice a day and floss once daily, and avoid biting or chewing on anything exceptionally hard. You should also maintain your regular, twice a year dental cleanings and exams. With proper care, your bridge can last 15 years or more.
Bridges offer numerous benefits. First, without your teeth, even just one, simple tasks like eating and speaking become difficult. With a dental bridge, your missing teeth are restored, in turn restoring your ability to do these tasks.
A bridge can help to restore your oral health. When you are missing a tooth, food becomes more easily lodged, and the areas more difficult to clean. This can result in gum disease. A bridge fills the space, preventing these issues from occurring.
Finally, a bridge can help to hold the rest of your natural teeth in place. This prevents your natural teeth from shifting, which means that your bite is maintained. It also helps to preserve the shape of your jaw, preventing you from appearing older than you truly are.
A bridge can restore your smile, as well as the many important functions of your teeth. For more information, or to find out if a bridge is right for you, contact National Dental Upper East Side today at (646) 736-2206!