You can replace missing teeth with a dental bridge to restore mouth function.
A fixed dental bridge, one in which the teeth surrounding the missing tooth are used to support the bridge, prevents those teeth from shifting. An implant-supported bridge serves the same purpose but can provide more stability and security long-term. At North York Dental clinic at Sheppard and Leslie, we offer fixed dental bridges and dental implant options.
Why Restore Missing Teeth?
Missing teeth can cause several dental issues. Adjacent teeth around the missing one can shift into its place, causing bite problems. With a gap between teeth, eating certain foods can become difficult. A dental bridge helps distribute the pressure evenly when you bite and chew by replacing the missing tooth or teeth that once served that function. Missing teeth can also cause low self-esteem and confidence when interacting with others for cosmetic reasons. Lack of a tooth and its root can cause the jawbone to lose mass and deteriorate. Used to replace missing teeth, either a fixed bridge or a permanent, implant-supported bridge can help alleviate these potential dental issues.
How a Dental Bridge Works
A dental bridge closes the gap between one or more missing teeth. A bridge can be supported by natural teeth, in which case a prosthetic tooth between the supporting teeth called a “pontic” is used, or, an implant is placed directly in the patient’s jawbone. A traditional dental bridge is cemented onto teeth in the mouth, using at least two teeth adjacent to the one missing as abutments to support the pontic. An implant-supported bridge uses a titanium post, or sometimes a couple of posts, placed in the jaw to support the missing tooth or teeth replacement.
Procedure for Receiving a Dental Bridge
Procedures for traditional and implant-supported dental bridges vary slightly. For both traditional and implant-based bridges, at the first visit the dentist will prepare the supports (teeth or implant post) on which the dental prosthetic will rest.
Traditional Bridge Procedure
For a traditional bridge, the abutment teeth will be recontoured, removing some enamel, for a crown to fit comfortably over them. The dentist will take an impression of the teeth, which will serve as a model for the bridge, pontic, and dental crowns. You will receive a temporary bridge until the permanent one is complete, which will be placed at a second appointment.
Implant-Supported Bridge Procedure
For implant-supported bridges, your dentist will plan your treatment case digitally for precise placement of implants in your jawbone. Typically, the first visit involves placing the implants, and the second visit involves placing the bridge. Implant-supported bridges mimic the entire structure of one’s missing tooth, making implants the strongest and most stable method of securing a bridge.
Candidacy for a Dental Bridge
Any person missing one or multiple teeth is a candidate for a dental bridge. Teeth must be healthy and without decay for a traditional bridge to work correctly. If a patient has gum disease, your dentist will need to treat this condition before placing a bridge.
Patients considering an implant-supported bridge must have enough dense jawbone to support the titanium posts. If a patient needs a bone graft prior to implant placement, your dentist will recommend this procedure first.
At North York Dental clinic, located on Sheppard Ave. just East of Leslie St., we are committed to helping you obtain the oral healthcare that you need. Call (416) 494-7878 to schedule a consultation regarding a dental bridge today, or click here.