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Fixed Dental Bridges: What To Expect

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If you have lost a tooth, your dentist may have recently prescribed a conventional fixed dental bridge to restore it. However, if you have never had a dental bridge, you may be apprehensive about this restorative option. Here is a bit of information about fixed dental bridges to help you better understand their benefits and what to expect:

Fixed dental bridges are permanent appliances.

A fixed dental bridge includes a false tooth to replace the tooth that you have lost. Additionally, it includes a dental crown on each side of the false tooth. These dental crowns are used to permanently secure the appliance within your mouth.

Each crown fits over one of the two natural teeth that border the gap left by your lost tooth and is cemented into place for permanence and stabilization. This allows the bridge to function like your natural teeth. There is no movement of the appliance when you chew or speak. Instead, the bridge remains firmly in place.

Fixed dental bridges can match the color of your teeth exactly.

Fixed dental bridges are usually tooth-colored. The crowns that are used for the bridge are often made of porcelain or porcelain over metal. Additionally, the false tooth in the middle of the bridge may also be made of porcelain.

The dental ceramic material that is used to create the tooth and crowns of the bridge can be matched exactly to the color of the other teeth within your mouth. Thus, the bridge is practically indistinguishable from your natural teeth once it has been installed.

The application of a dental bridge usually takes at least two dental appointments.

A dental bridge must fit the exact contours of your mouth. As a result, your dentist prepares an impression or mold of your oral cavity from which the dental bridge is designed. 

The impression of your teeth is made during one appointment, but the actual placement of the bridge cannot occur until after the appliance has been sent back from the dental lab, where the bridge is created. Once the appliance has been received by your dentist, a secondary visit is scheduled for its installation.

Before the bridge can be placed in your mouth, the size of the teeth that will be covered by the bridge crowns must be slightly reduced. A bit of tooth material is removed to ensure that the bridge fits into your mouth without altering your bite.

To learn more about dental bridges, schedule a consultation with a dentist in your local area. Contact a dental office like Scott W. Murphy, D.M.D., P.A. for more information and assistance.