What is a dental bridge?

A dental bridge is designed to replace a missing tooth or teeth and it is basically one piece of prosthetic device that connects multiple teeth and serves as a replacement for the teeth, like a bridge over the river. It connects two shores, so you have support on one shore and on the other shore and it connects them both with the road over the river. If you're missing a tooth in the center and there are teeth available on either side of the missing spot, then we would make something that's called the bridge. Each tooth on the side of the missing spot will get a crown and then we'll make one piece that looks like three crowns, for example, if there's only one tooth missing and those two teeth will hold the middle one.

What is the difference between a bridge and dentures?

Dentures are a removable device, so it's something that you take out of your mouth whereas a bridge gets cemented in permanently, so it is a non-removable device.

What are the pros and cons of dental bridges?

The purpose of the bridge is to replace missing teeth. The pros would be that you can replace missing teeth without any surgeries and it's not really invasive because you're not cutting anything, you're not cutting the gum, and you're not placing an implant in there. If your anatomy is deficient in the sense that you can't use implants or dental implants, then the bridge would be the best choice for you because it will replace the missing teeth and will restore your ability to chew food and serve as a supporter of the opposing arched teeth. The cons are that you have to prepare the adjacent teeth, make them smaller, and get crowns on them. If you don't already need crowns on those teeth for different reasons, then you would need the crowns anyway and they could be utilized to make it a bridge instead of just single crowns. If you need a dental implant, the implant will replace just that one tooth and you would not need to touch the adjacent teeth.

What are the different types of dental bridges?

There is a difference in the material used, but schematically all dental bridges look and work the same. The idea is the same: you're connecting healthy teeth that are supporting missing teeth. The bridge will be one piece that looks like all teeth are there. It could be just three teeth, four teeth, or even up to sixteen teeth in one bridge.

What are the alternatives to a dental bridge?

You can get a removable denture, which will replace the missing teeth and is not as comfortable because you have to take it out of your mouth and keep it in a cup of water overnight. Or you can get dental implants, which are a little bit more comfortable if you're a good candidate for it. It varies case by case, so ask your doctor to see whether you are a good candidate for a bridge or for something else.

What is a removable dental bridge versus a fixed dental bridge?

A removable dental bridge is basically a denture. It's something that you take out of your mouth when it's not in use, like at night. A permanent bridge is supported by the teeth and you just brush it like your own teeth.

What is a cantilever dental bridge?

If you have two supporting parts right next to each other and then you have three crowns, with two supporting next to each other and the third one hanging over those two, then this is called a cantilever. It's suspended like a peninsula over the missing spot. It's not the best type of bridge; the best type is when the missing tooth is in the middle between the two supporting parts.

What are the benefits of dental bridges?

The benefits are that you get to restore your mouth to full function, you're not missing teeth anymore, and it gives you support to opposing dentition. It also doesn't let your cheek fall in because you're missing teeth. It's very beneficial to have bridges done rather than have missing teeth. It supports your skeleton and gives you the ability to chew your food properly.

Is dental bridge work painful?

No, dental bridge work is not painful. You do need an injection to get a bridge, but after that, it doesn't hurt at all. It's the same as getting a filling. After you get the injection, you don't feel any pain. Would you have pain after the work is done? No, you get a temporary or provisional bridge that covers your tooth and does not let you be sensitive to temperature. It's not painful at all.

What does the dental bridge placement procedure involve?

First, you get an injection so you're numb and don't feel the dentist doing the procedure. Second, they take an impression of your teeth before the procedure so they can provide you with provisional crowns while you're waiting for your bridge. Then they prepare the teeth, make them smaller, and either scan you or take an impression for the bridge, which goes to the laboratory to fabricate a custom-made bridge. You then come back and get that permanent bridge placed.

How long does a dental bridge last?

In my experience, dental bridges last many years. It's not something that will last just a year or two; it can last 10, 20 years, depending on the material and how you take care of it. If you go to the dentist regularly, a dental bridge might last a lifetime.

How should I care for my dental bridge?

You have to brush and floss, and see your dental hygienist regularly. Treat it like your own teeth.

When should I schedule an appointment for a dental bridge?

If you need a dental bridge or suspect you need it, or if you simply would like to talk about it, you can call us at (276) 288-8721 and ask to speak with a dentist or schedule an appointment. You can also go online to alldentalneeds.com to request an appointment with one of our dental professionals. When you get here, we'll discuss what you need and answer all your questions so you're comfortable getting your procedures done.

These Bridges Offer A Functional Way To Replace Missing Teeth And Work In Tandem With Crowns To Achieve An Aesthetically Pleasing Result.

dental-bridgesAre Dental Bridges An Alternative To Dental Implants?

Yes they are. Many patients that do not want to get dental implants opt for dental bridges are perfectly happy with them. 

Dental bridges are false teeth that are fused between two porcelain crowns which replace the space left by a missing tooth. The crowns holding it in place are attached upon the teeth on either side of the false tooth. This is called ‘a fixed bridge’ and it can be used to replace one or more missing teeth. A fixed bridge is placed in the mouth with permanent cement versus dentures which can be removed.

Our dentists will first assess your mouth, consult your diagnostic records and take models. Then the actual structure of the bridge is decided upon. These bridges offer a functional way to replace missing teeth and work in tandem with crowns to achieve an aesthetically pleasing result.

The main benefit of dental bridges is that they can last five to 15 years and even longer depending on your oral hygiene. They may also prevent future problems due to missing teeth may cause the surrounding teeth to drift out of their position and help prevent disease and tooth decay.

Most dental insurances will pay a percentage of the fee depending on your dental plan. Our staff can speak to you about different financing options after your consultation with our specialists.