You may have heard of a dental bridge and about its use for restoring missing teeth, but you might not know what exactly a dental bridge is. A bridge is called as such because it literally bridges across a gap in the mouth where one or more teeth are missing. It uses the neighboring teeth as anchors (abutments) to support the dental prosthetic, called the pontic. Tamarack Dental Associates offers this treatment to patients in Altus, OK to restore the appearance and functionality of a smile.
A dental bridge in Altus offers several benefits. In addition to restoring the ability to chew and speak properly a bridge:
It also helps patients to regain their confidence as, often, an individual is self-conscious about a gap in their teeth.
It usually takes at least two appointments to have a bridge placed at Tamarack Dental Associates. During the first appointment, the abutment teeth supporting the bridge will be prepared. These teeth will be shaved down a small portion to create sufficient room to support a dental crown. Once they are the right shape and size, an impression will be made of the teeth and the gap. The bridge will be created in a dental laboratory using this impression. A temporary bridge will be placed on the prepared teeth to keep them protected until the bridge is ready.
Once the bridge returns from the dental lab, the temporary bridge can be removed. The dentist will check the fit of the bridge by putting it in place. Adjustments can be made, if necessary before the bridge is permanently cemented into place. It may take multiple visits to achieve the perfect fit.
A bridge will have to be cleaned regularly to prevent damage and decay. Instructions will be provided on how to do so properly after a bridge has been placed. With good maintenance, bridges can be expected to last over 10 years.
If you have missing teeth and are looking for a restoration solution, come see us at Tamarack Dental Associates about having a bridge placed in Altus.