If missing teeth have compromised the health and appearance of your smile, we offer dental bridges, available at our Missouri City, TX-area practice, as one of our comprehensive services. A dental bridge can make your smile look more attractive while maintaining alignment and improving function. Unlike many practices, we can provide a completely customized bridge in the span of a single visit, helping you quickly regain comfort and confidence.
What is a Dental Bridge?
A dental bridge, sometimes called a partial denture, consists of one or more prosthetic teeth fused to a frame designed to replace part of an upper or lower dental arch. In a traditional dental bridge procedure, your dentist will create a crown for each tooth on either side of the gap in your smile. These crowns act as supports for the bridge. Our doctors use CEREC® technology to create our custom crowns, which can be designed and placed in the same day. CEREC® uses digital impressions of your teeth to guide a computerized milling device in carving your restoration from a single block of porcelain chosen to match the color of your teeth. If you already have an implant in place, your bridge will be crafted to attach to the implant.
Dental Bridge Benefits and Options
When we lose a tooth or teeth, our remaining teeth begin to shift out of alignment. This can cause pain when chewing or speaking, teeth grinding, and further tooth loss. Dental bridges not only have the potential to correct these problems, but also restore your confidence in your appearance.
Traditional bridges are non-surgical, anchored to crown-covered teeth on either side so that the restoration rests on top of the gums. This type of restoration is typically covered by most insurance policies, either for the total cost or a portion.
Your doctor may recommend an implant-supported bridge instead of a traditional restoration if you are interested in the most secure and durable treatment option.
An implant-supported bridge is anchored to titanium posts embedded in the jaw. Your doctor may recommend this procedure instead of a traditional bridge if you are interested in the most secure and durable treatment option. Implant-supported restorations do not require the modification of surrounding teeth, and also preserve the health of the jaw, guarding against the bone degeneration that occurs after tooth loss.
What to Expect During the Procedure
When you come in for your consultation, your doctor will perform a thorough exam with x-rays, discuss your goals and concerns, and determine if you are a good candidate for a dental bridge.
If you choose to receive a traditional bridge, your doctor will begin by preparing the adjacent teeth to accommodate crowns. Your dentist will use a local anesthetic to ensure that you are comfortable throughout the procedure. Once the area has been prepped, your doctor will use the CEREC® system to create a digital impression of the site. The system then produces a customized porcelain restoration designed for a precise fit and natural appearance.
If you and your doctor determine that an implant-supported bridge is right for you, you will first undergo a minor surgery to have the posts placed. Depending on the composition of your jaw bone, you may need to undergo bone grafting or a sinus lift before the implant procedure. Each patient's treatment time frame differs.
Aftercare and Maintenance
Your doctor will provide instructions for follow-up care and maintenance after the procedure, demonstrating how to clean your teeth effectively with a bridge-specific floss and brush. Depending on the extent of treatment, you may experience some sensitivity and discomfort immediately after the procedure, but it should subside within a few days. You should expect to eat soft foods for a short period and to take special care with brushing and flossing.
If you are dealing with negative results from missing teeth, contact us and schedule a consultation today. We look forward to helping you achieve a healthy, beautiful smile.