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Dental Bridges

“Bridging the gap created by missing teeth”

Missing teeth can cause serious health problems for your smile, since there is greater exposure of the surrounding natural teeth and gum tissue that may promote decay on the surface. Below the surface, there may be even greater problems as the teeth drift and the jawbone begins to recede. Thanks to dental bridges, NuSmile dentists can provide a simple, low-maintenance solution that prevents these issues and helps preserve the beauty of your smile.

Bridges Defined

Dental bridges are typically an ideal restoration for one missing tooth with natural teeth remaining on either side,

as these teeth serve as the base for the bridge by anchoring the false tooth in the middle. Simply put, dental bridges literally bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth. A bridge is made up of two crowns one on each tooth on either side of the gap — these two anchoring teeth are called abutment teeth — and a false tooth/teeth in between. These false teeth are called “pontics” and can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain or a combination of these materials. They match the natural shade of the teeth, which makes the restoration indistinguishable from your natural teeth. Bridges might also be used in combination with dental implants, where implants will be capped with crowns supporting a bridge to cover larger areas of missing teeth.

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Procedure

  • Imaging and planning – with any restoration, dental bridges are custom-made for every patient; detailed imaging and mapping of the mouth is necessary to achieve the right fit.
  • Temporary restoration – before a bridge is placed over the anchor teeth, these teeth are filed down so that a crown can fit over the surface. After reducing the tooth/teeth, we will take an impression to provide an exact mold for the crown or bridge. If porcelain is to be used, we will determine the correct shade for the crown or bridge to match the color of your existing teeth. Using this impression, our onsite lab will then make your crown or bridge. While your permanent restoration is being crafted in the lab, you may have a temporary bridge put in place to allow you to resume normal activities in the meantime.
  • Permanent bridge placement – during your final appointment for dental bridge restoration, the temporary crown or bridge will be removed, The permanent custom bridge will be put in place and checked for a snug fit. It will be permanently bonded to the anchor teeth.

Do I Need A Bridge?

NuSmile may recommend a bridge if you are missing one or more teeth. Gaps left by missing teeth eventually cause the remaining teeth to rotate or shift into the empty spaces, resulting in a bad bite. The imbalance caused by missing teeth can also lead to gum disease and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders. In fact, seeking treatment with dental bridges now may help you avoid more costly, extensive restorations down the road. You will have a more symmetrical bite and prevent drifting of the natural teeth. And because you can care for your dental bridges just like your natural teeth, there’s no hassle or inconvenience.

Caring For Your Bridge and Crowns

While a bridge and crown can last a lifetime, they sometimes come loose or fall out.

A bridge can lose its support if the teeth or bone holding it in place are damaged by dental disease. However, good oral hygiene can help ensure the longevity of your bridge. Keep your gums and teeth healthy by brushing with toothpaste twice a day and flossing daily. Also be sure to see your NuSmile dentist and hygienist regularly for checkups and professional cleanings.

Contact NuSmile Today

If you’re missing teeth, a bridge may be your best option to help avoid shifting teeth,

A bad bite, gum disease and TMJ. If you want your teeth to look and function their very best, set an appointment with NuSmile today. Our dental expertise extends to virtually any cosmetic or functional issue in the mouth, routinely helping our patients achieve healthy and beautiful smiles. We serve patients in Tampa, Florida, as well as surrounding areas such as Seminole and Clearwater. Schedule a free consultation today.

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