If you lose one or more teeth, you might struggle with day-to-day oral functions. Fortunately, your dentist can help you replace missing teeth so that you can speak and chew with ease again. They can offer multiple methods of restoring your smile after tooth loss, and one option is the dental bridge.
The traditional dental bridge refers to a fixed prosthetic that will remain in your smile securely. You can feel more confident going into the procedure involved with this treatment when you understand what will occur in the dentist’s chair. Read on to see an outline of what you can expect during the placement of a dental bridge.
Consult with Your Restorative Dentist
The first step to tooth replacement treatment using a dental bridge involves a consultation appointment with your dentist. The dentist will evaluate your oral health, your medical history, and your existing dental structure to ensure this appliance is the right treatment for your specific needs.
They will also go over your comfort level and preferences when it comes to restorative dental solutions. They will check that you would like a fixed option to replace your missing teeth rather than a removable one. Then they can schedule your procedure to place the device in your smile.
Prepare Abutment Teeth
The dentist begins the procedure to give you a traditional dental bridge by preparing the surrounding teeth. These teeth beside the missing teeth, known as abutment teeth, will serve to anchor the dental prosthetic.
The dentist shaves a minute amount of enamel from these teeth to make room for the dental crowns that sit on each end of the appliance. You will receive a local anesthetic to numb the area and ensure your comfort during this process.
Take Digital Impressions of Your Smile
After preparing the affected teeth, the dentist will take digital impressions of your smile using 3D imaging technology. These scans will capture accurate images of your teeth and the gaps so that the dentist can then build a personalized bridge that will fit your unique smile comfortably and beautifully.
The dental prosthetic will appear gorgeous and natural while also functioning well enough so that you can use your teeth and appliance as you normally would. The dentist will give you a temporary bridge to protect your smile as they build this custom device. This can take several weeks to build in a dental lab.
Return to Dentist for Bridge Placement
You will return to your dentist’s office once your dental bridge is ready to place it in your smile. The dentist easily removes the temporary device and slips the bridge into the mouth, with the end crowns fitting over the abutment teeth. They seal it into place using dental cement.
The dentist will check your bite before you leave to ensure it fits as well as it should without interfering with oral function. Then the fixed bridge can stay in your smile for fifteen years or longer. Adhere to your dentist’s aftercare instructions to maximize the benefits of this treatment.