Regain Your Smile with Dental Bridges
If you’re looking to restore your smile and regain your confidence, dental bridges may be the solution you need. Dental bridges are an excellent option for replacing missing teeth, allowing you to enjoy a complete and beautiful smile once again. The talented Farmington cosmetic dentists of Desert Hills Dental Care are here to explain dental bridges. In this helpful guide, we’ll go over the types of dental bridges available, their many benefits, the process of having a dental bridge installed, and more.
What Are Dental Bridges?
Dental bridges are prosthetic devices used to fill the gap created by one or more missing teeth. They consist of one or more artificial teeth, known as pontics, held in place by dental crowns on the adjacent natural teeth or dental implants. These bridges effectively “bridge” the gap and prevent the surrounding teeth from shifting out of position, maintaining the alignment of your bite and your overall oral health.
Types of Dental Bridges
There are several types of dental bridges available, and your Farmington cosmetic dentist will determine the most suitable option based on your specific needs:
- Traditional Dental Bridges: These bridges consist of pontics held in place by dental crowns on the teeth adjacent to the gap. They’re the most common type of dental bridge and are ideal when you have natural teeth on both sides of the gap.
- Cantilever Dental Bridges: Similar to traditional bridges, but they’re anchored to only one adjacent tooth. Cantilever bridges are used when there’s only one natural tooth next to the gap.
- Maryland Dental Bridges: Also known as resin-bonded bridges, they use a metal or porcelain framework bonded to the back of the adjacent teeth. Maryland bridges are a conservative option, as they don’t require the adjacent teeth to be extensively prepared.
- Implant-Supported Dental Bridges: These bridges are secured in place by dental implants instead of dental crowns. They’re an excellent option if you have multiple missing teeth in a row and want a more stable and long-lasting solution.
The Benefits of Dental Bridges
Dental bridges offer numerous advantages that go beyond restoring your smile. Here are some of the key benefits:
- Enhanced Smile: Dental bridges fill the gaps caused by missing teeth, giving you a complete, natural-looking smile restoration.
- Improved Speech: Missing teeth can affect your speech. Dental bridges help you speak clearly and confidently.
- Restored Chewing Function: With dental bridges, you can chew your favorite foods without discomfort or difficulty.
- Maintained Facial Structure: Missing teeth can lead to sagging facial features. Dental bridges help maintain the shape of your face, preventing premature aging.
- Prevent Teeth Shifting: Dental bridges keep the adjacent remaining teeth from shifting into the gaps, preserving your bite alignment.
- Durable and Long-Lasting: With proper care, dental bridges can last for many years, providing a reliable tooth replacement solution.
Who Qualifies for Dental Bridges?
You’re likely a good candidate for dental bridges if any of the following apply to you:
- You have one or more missing teeth
- You have healthy adjacent teeth to support the dental bridge
- You’re looking for a fixed and permanent tooth replacement option
- You’re seeking to improve your ability to chew and speak properly
- You have good oral hygiene habits to maintain the longevity of the dental bridge
- You want to enhance your smile’s aesthetics and facial appearance
- You prefer a more cost-effective option compared to singular dental implants
- You wish to prevent remaining teeth from shifting and maintain proper dental alignment
Your Farmington cosmetic dentist will go over all of the factors affecting your eligibility during your initial consultation.
The Dental Bridge Process
During your initial visit to Desert Hills Dental Care, your Farmington cosmetic dentist will examine your oral health, discuss your concerns and goals, and determine if dental bridges are suitable for you. Your Farmington cosmetic dentist will consider factors such as the health of your gums, the condition of the adjacent teeth, and the strength of your jawbone to ensure dental bridges will be successful.
X-rays and impressions of your teeth may be taken to create a personalized treatment plan. If you have any underlying oral health issues, your dentist will address them before proceeding with the bridge placement.
Once you’ve been deemed eligible for dental bridges, the design phase begins. Your dentist will work closely with you to choose the right type of bridge and the materials that best match the color and shape of your natural teeth.
The teeth adjacent to the gap will need to be prepared for dental crowns. Your dentist will remove a small portion of the enamel to make room for the crowns that will hold the bridge securely in place.
While your permanent bridge is being fabricated in the dental lab, you’ll receive a temporary bridge to protect the exposed teeth and gums.
Once your custom dental bridge is ready, you’ll return to Desert Hills Dental Care for the final placement. Your dentist will check the fit and make any necessary adjustments before permanently bonding the bridge in place.
After the placement, you may need to schedule a follow-up visit to ensure the bridge fits correctly and that you’re comfortable with it. Your dentist will make any necessary adjustments at this time.
Caring for Your Dental Bridges
To prolong the life of your dental bridges and maintain good oral health, follow these essential care tips:
- Practice Good Oral Hygiene: Brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss daily, including under the dental bridge, to remove plaque and food particles.
- Use a Water Flosser: A water flosser can be helpful in cleaning hard-to-reach areas around the bridge and between teeth.
- Avoid Sticky and Hard Foods: Minimize the consumption of sticky, chewy, or hard foods that could damage the dental bridge.
- Quit Smoking: Smoking can weaken the bridge and increase the risk of complications, so consider quitting for better oral health.
- Regular Dental Check-ups: Visit Desert Hills Dental Care for regular check-ups and professional cleanings to ensure the bridge’s integrity and detect any potential issues early on.
Frequently Asked Questions
With proper care and maintenance, dental bridges can last between 10 and 15 years or even longer. Be sure to follow your dentist’s instructions on dental bridge care and visit them regularly to keep your bridge lasting as long as possible.
The dental bridge procedure is typically not painful, as it’s performed while the patient is under local anesthesia. You may experience some mild discomfort after the procedure, but it should subside within a few days.
Before getting a dental bridge, it’s essential to have any underlying oral health issues, including gum disease, treated. Healthy gums are crucial for the success of dental bridges.
Yes, dental bridges can replace missing back teeth. Your dentist will assess the condition of the adjacent teeth and the strength of your jawbone to determine if a dental bridge is the right choice.
Call Desert Hills Dental, Restore Your Smile Today!
If you’re looking for dental bridges in Farmington, NM, Desert Hills Dental Care is here to help. Our experienced team of dental professionals will provide you with personalized and high-quality dental bridge solutions to restore your smile and improve your oral health.
Contact us at (505) 327-4863 to schedule a consultation and take the first step toward a confident and complete smile. Our experienced dental team is here to provide dental bridge restorations to our Farmington patients and patients from surrounding areas such as Bloomfield, Aztec, and Upper Fruitland, NM.