A healthy smile lights up your face and gives you a pleasing expression. When you’re missing teeth, however, smiling can be embarrassing. Missing teeth can lead to difficulty chewing and a lack of confidence. You’re not alone if you’re missing teeth, though. According to the American College of Prosthodontists, close to 178 million Americans lose at least one tooth in their lifetimes.
A dental bridge fills in the gaps, giving you back your smile and improving your overall health. A dental bridge vs. implant is a conversation you need to have with your family dentist because he knows your goals and your dental history. Since your dentist at CitiDental also practices cosmetic dentistry, so your appearance is a factor while helping you make the best decision for your dental health.
Tooth loss can lead to serious complications if you don’t find a way to replace the missing teeth. The teeth that are left in your mouth around the gap eventually start to tilt or shift over time, according to the American Dental Association. Your teeth on the opposite side of your mouth also move up or down, leaning toward the vacant space. Your bite changes due to these shifts, which then shows up in your smile and your teeth alignment.
All these changes add stress to your jaw joints and teeth, which then leads to more problems and pain. Your speech may be affected as well. Your risk of tooth decay and gum disease increases. So the benefits of replacing lost teeth far outweigh your dental bridge cost.
Through a surgical procedure, implants are placed in your jaw. The implants are made of titanium to serve as the tooth’s root. A crown then fits over the implant. Your gums and bones must be in a sufficiently healthy state to get implants, however. And if you go too long with a missing tooth, you may end up needing a bone graft, or gum graft to provide a stable environment for the implant.
Usually, you won’t need an implant when you get dental bridges. The dental bridge cost typically is lower than an implant cost too. When you ask, “how long does a dental bridge last,” comparing a dental bridge vs. implants, the longest-lasting solution always is implants.
Bridges are easy to take care of and safe for most everyone. They’re the quickest procedure to replace lost teeth. A dental bridge typically has three parts:
Synthetic teeth to sit in the vacant space
Crowns on the adjacent teeth
Crowns may be made of varying materials such as ceramic, porcelain or metal. Once you have a bridge, you won’t even notice it’s there, according to Mayo Clinic. Your Queens dentist matches the false teeth and the crowns to your natural teeth color. Additionally, it’s a permanent fixture that can’t be removed, unlike dentures. As long as you don’t have an accident that causes it to break, a bridge can last for many years.
First, you undergo a complete oral checkup by your family dentist. Once your bones are found to be acceptable, some enamel on the teeth sitting on each side of the empty space is removed. Those teeth become the abutment teeth on which the crowns are placed to support the bridge. An impression is made to ensure the bridge, artificial teeth and crowns properly fit your mouth.
You may get a temporary bridge while your new teeth are being made, after which the permanent dental bridge is glued to the abutment teeth and shaped accordingly. It may take a few visits to ensure your comfort. If you’re wondering how long does a dental bridge last? — You won’t have to think about replacing it for decades. It’s still important to practice good daily oral practices, though, to keep your gums healthy enough to support the bridge.
Follow your dentist’s instructions closely; floss and brush twice a day. Use a threader to reach the floss around the between the false tooth and the crowns. Your dentist instructs you on how to floss with a threader to clean around the bridge.
You must maintain regular checkups with your CitiDental team. At first, you may need to restrict yourself to soft food while your gums heal. Refrain from sticky food and sugar, too. Remember, there’s less protective enamel on the abutment teeth. Eventually, you can eat and drink everything you like.