Losing a tooth can be both scary and embarrassing. Unfortunately, this fear and embarrassment often leads people to minimize the importance of having all of their teeth. Having a missing tooth is more than just a cosmetic dentistry issue; it can affect your overall oral health as well. Here at Advanced Dental Care of Austin, our dental professionals have handed many tooth loss cases over the years and they can restore your smile to its natural brilliance.
A fixed dental bridge is a permanent dental appliance that is often used to fill the gap left by missing teeth. Of all the different types of bridges, the traditional bridge is the one that is used most often. This appliance is made of porcelain teeth and has been fused to a metal base. Two dental crowns are placed over the anchoring teeth in order to hold the dental bridge in place. This fills the gap that has been left by your missing teeth.
What are fixed dental bridges used for?
Dental bridges are used to fill in the spaces left by missing teeth. This, in turn, helps to maintain the natural shape of your face and prevents your remaining teeth from drifting out of place to fill in the gap themselves. Once the bridge is in place, you will regain your ability to chew and speak properly, as well as having a restored smile. If you have a removable partial, a fixed bridge may feel more natural.
What is involved in getting a fixed dental bridge?
In most cases, getting your fixed bridge will require two visits to our office. During your first visit, your dentist will numb the teeth on either side of the gap. These will serve to anchor the teeth and will prepare the dental crowns by having a small portion of the tooth enamel removed. Once this is done, your dentist will take an impression of the gap in order to create a mold that will be sent to the laboratory where your fixed dental bridge will be made. You will be given a temporary bridge to wear until your next appointment.
During your second appointment, your fixed bridge will be checked to ensure a proper fit, and any necessary adjustments will be made. In many cases, the dentist may choose to temporarily cement the bridge so that you can wear it for a week or two to ensure that the bridge is truly comfortable. The fixed bridge will then be permanently cemented into place, and you will be given a list of care instructions to follow.
Am I a good candidate for a fixed dental bridge?
If you are missing one or more teeth, but the surrounding teeth are healthy, you are an ideal candidate for a fixed bridge. You may also be a good candidate if your surrounding teeth are treatable. Young children, and patients whose surrounding teeth are severely decayed or unhealthy will not be good candidates for bridges, and may be considered for other treatments instead.
If you have more questions about dental bridges, or would like to see if you are a good candidate for a dental bridge, call us today at 512-331-1477. We look forward to answering your questions, and to restoring your smile.
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