Even one single missing tooth in your mouth can create other serious problems. Missing teeth are not only an aesthetic problem, but it can shift adjacent teeth and can also encourage additional bone loss. At Salem Dental Arts our goal is that all our patients are satisfied with the way their teeth and smiles look. If you find yourself covering your mouth with your hand when speaking or smiling, then we can help you with a dental bridge.
Missing Teeth Create a Domino Effect
One missing tooth can lead to more down the road if you don't take care of the problem now. When a tooth is missing, the root is gone. Your mouth is designed to work in harmony, and all the pieces in it are interconnected. When one part is no longer there, the others feel the loss. Adjacent teeth may shift and move creating the possibility of additional bone and teeth loss. When you have an empty tooth socket, the top or bottom tooth doesn't have anything to bite against, and this will weaken your gums and jawbone. Missing teeth are not just a cosmetic issue.
What are Bridges?
A bridge is a dental device which anchors a new crown to replace a missing tooth. The bridge is held in place using two natural teeth or dental implants, called abutment teeth. The prosthetic tooth added to the bridge is called a pontic.
The most common material used to build a bridge is ceramic. However, we can also use metal, alloys, and porcelain depending on the tooth or teeth that need replacement. A bridge will look and function like your natural teeth.
Types of Bridges
There are two types of bridges:
Fixed Bridges: in this case we need to prepare the two healthy teeth that will hold the bridge, which contains the crown, in place. This process is the same as the one we use when adding new crowns.
Resin-Bonded Bridges: this type of bridge is also known as Maryland Bridge. Metal clasps support the bridge, and there is no need to prepare adjacent teeth. Instead, the clasps are cemented to the back of the supporting teeth.
Getting a Bridge
This cosmetic procedure requires you to come to the office twice. During the first visit, we will take x-rays and examine your oral cavity thoroughly. We also prepare your teeth if you are getting fixed bridges. This process consists of trimming or shaving the enamel so that the crowns can be placed. We will also make impressions of your teeth so that the lab can build your new bridge and crown. Making the bridge can take up to two weeks and we may send you home with a temporary crown.
On your second visit, we will install the new bridge and make sure it fits you comfortably and matches your natural teeth perfectly. Now you can go home with a new, beautiful smile that you can show off.
Call today to schedule your consultation
If you are interested in getting a dental bridge, please call Salem Dental Arts at 978-741-1640 today to schedule a consultation.
Learn more about restorative services offered at Salem Dental Arts