Tooth loss is a common issue that affects millions of Americans across the country. Approximately 178 million people are missing at least one of their teeth for one reason or another. Fortunately, just because you have lost a tooth doesn’t mean that you need to go the rest of your life with an unsightly gap in your smile. At Allen Smile Design, Dr. Tonie C. Lewis offers high-quality dental bridges in Allen to restore smiles affected by tooth loss. If you have gaps in your smile, give us a call to get started with an initial consultation.
A dental bridge is a restoration that’s used to replace one or several consecutive missing teeth. This can be anywhere from one to four missing teeth in a row. The bridge is composed of two crowns and a number of replacement teeth known at “pontics.” The crowns are anchored on the adjacent teeth or implants, depending on the type of bridge you opt for. Bridges can be made out of a variety of different materials, but porcelain is usually the best choice for a strong, natural-looking restoration.
If Dr. Lewis determines that you make a good candidate for a dental bridge, you have two different types that you could end up with. Here is what each one consists of:
If you have healthy teeth on both sides of the gap that needs to be filled it, a traditional bridge is likely the ideal option. The teeth that support crowns are known as “abutment teeth,” and they need to be altered slightly for the bridge to fit properly. This type of restoration can be placed in just a few visits and typically costs less than its alternative.
Dental implant bridges are used when there are three or more missing teeth in a row. Instead of being placed over abutment teeth, the crowns are placed on titanium, screw-like implants that are placed directly into the jawbone via a surgical procedure. They fuse with the jawbone over time and act as artificial tooth roots. On average, implant bridges last longer than traditional bridges and help to prevent future jawbone deterioration as a result of tooth loss.
A bridge is a relatively simple and cost-effective option for replacing missing teeth. In addition to providing additional strength and stability for chewing and speaking, they help to maintain the shape of your face. They also keep your natural teeth from shifting out of place and leading to misalignment issues last on.