Bridges are a restorative option for an individual who is missing one or more teeth. The absence of teeth results in gaps that can cause remaining teeth to shift into the empty spaces and change your bite. Other issues like gum disease and TMJ can result from areas with absent teeth that are left unattended. Bridges, like crowns, can be made from several different types of materials, including porcelain and can help with maintaining the shape of your face, distributing the force of your bite by substituting for your missing teeth, restoring your smile, reconstructing your ability to speak and chew properly and comfortably, and preventing the aforementioned shifting of teeth.
What to Expect
The procedure for getting a porcelain dental bridge involves two appointments at our office. Your abutment teeth, or the surrounding teeth that receive a crown and act as an anchoring point for the bridge, are prepared. This means that we anesthetize the area and your teeth are filed down to allow room for a crown to fit. The amount of tooth taken off depends entirely on what type of crown will serve as the anchoring point for the bridge. On the other hand, if parts of your tooth are missing due to breakage or decay, we will fill in the gaps with a filling material to create appropriate support and structure. After that is done, we make impressions of the teeth and the surrounding area to serve as a model for the crowns, bridge, and pontics (false teeth) to be made from. The model will help ensure a proper and comfortable fit and until your second appointment, a temporary bridge will be placed in for you. The model is sent out of our office to a dental laboratory where the bridge will be constructed.
Once we receive the bridge, we will invite you back for a second appointment. At this second appointment, the temporary bridge will be taken out and the new porcelain bridge will be inserted. Before we put the bridge in place, we check and adjust it accordingly to attain the perfect fit and color. It may be possible that we will cement the bridge in place temporarily and have you come back in a couple weeks – if only to ascertain that this fit will work best for you. After this process, we will cement the porcelain bridge in place permanently.
Dental bridges are anticipated to last from 5-15 years or longer, with the proper care. Excellent oral hygiene routines and regular check-ups help ensure that this will be the case. As your natural teeth serve as a foundation for the bridges through the placement of the abutment crowns, it’s incredibly important to take good care of them. The presence of crowns or dental bridges does not mean your teeth or the surrounding areas are protected from issues like decay or gum disease. An oral health routine involving brushing your teeth twice daily, flossing daily, and using an antiseptic mouthwash at least once a day can help with the longevity of your porcelain bridges and the prevention of these problems.
If you are looking for more information about porcelain bridges, bridges as a whole, or have any concerns, feel free to visit our dental bridges page or contact our office today!