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A Better Way to Fill the Gap

An attractive and effective way to fill the space left by a missing tooth or teeth is by having a custom made bridge put in place.

When you have a gap left by missing teeth your remaining teeth may shift or rotate into the empty space which could affect your bite- which could lead to gum disease and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.

Conventional Bridges

Conventional bridges are cemented to the natural teeth surrounding the empty space and anchor the bridge in place. As with crowns, you will have a choice of different materials including an all porcelain bridge for an even more natural translucency and biocompatibility. At The Gentle Dental and Implant Clinic we offer various bridge options. Your dentist will help you decide which type of bridge is best for you.

Maryland Bridge

A Maryland bridge replaces a missing tooth by bonding it to the adjacent teeth using a strong adhesive thus preserving the teeth’s healthy original tissue.

Conceived at the university of Maryland, these bridges fill empty spaces without the invasive procedure of crowning the adjacent teeth which is necessary for conventional bridges.

Gentle Dental took the time to explain all my options. Together we decided a bridge was best for me. I love it.

Q. Are bridges uncomfortable? Do they hurt?

As always, our highly trained dentists use the latest technologies and techniques to make the process of fitting a bridge as comfortable as possible whilst preventing any discomfort.

With a Conventional bridge, some patients experience a small amount of sensitivity for a short period of time, but it normally goes away on its own within a few day. Since Maryland bridges are less invasive you shouldn’t feel any discomfort whatsoever.

Q. Why should I replace missing teeth?

Your appearance is one reason. Another is that the gap left by a missing tooth can mean greater strain on the teeth at either side. A gap can also mean your ‘bite’ is affected, because the teeth next to the space can lean into the gap and alter the way the upper and lower teeth bite together. This can then lead to food getting packed into the gap, which causes both decay and gum disease.

Q. How are missing teeth replaced?

This depends on the number of teeth missing and on where they are in the mouth. The condition of the other teeth also affects the decision.

There are two main two ways to replace the missing teeth. The first is with a removable false tooth or teeth – a partial denture. The second is with a fixed bridge. A bridge is usually used where there are fewer teeth to replace, or when the missing teeth are only on one side of the mouth.

Q. Can I always have a bridge to replace missing teeth?

Yes, if you have enough strong teeth with good bone support. Your dentist will help you decide the best way of replacing your missing teeth within your budget.

Q. What are bridges made of?

Bridges are usually made of a precious metal base. If the bridge will show, porcelain is then bonded to the base. Sometimes, there are other non-precious metals used in the base to reduce the cost.

Q. Do I need to have an implant if my tooth is missing?

Fractured, broken or missing teeth can seriously affect oral health and overall well-being. This is because a broken tooth can become irritated with inflammation and cause tooth decay. This can lead to gum disease that can also cause illness in the rest of the body. Missing teeth can affect the way teeth bite together which can cause grinding down of other teeth. Over time, the jaw can appear distorted which can affect the shape of your face and overall appearance. If you are concerned about this, one of our resident dentists can discuss your concerns with you and advise you on the condition of your teeth.

Q. Is there any benefit to a bridge over a denture?

Conventional bridges are permanently fixed in your mouth, as opposed to dentures which can be removed. By being permanently cemented, bridges act and look more like your natural teeth and make it easier to eat foods such as fresh fruit and vegetables, crusty bread, steak, etc. which can be difficult to eat with dentures.

Your gums and palate need to ‘breath’ in order to protect themselves from disease and tooth loss- bridges allow this to happen naturally. Dentures, on the other hand, need to be removed from your mouth daily.

Q. Are bridges expensive?

Although a bridge may seem expensive it will last many years. It will also improve your appearance and bite. A bridge uses the considerable skill of the dentist and technician, and in this way, it’s similar to ordering a piece of hand-made jewellery. The materials are also expensive so it’s fair to say a bridge will not be the cheapest treatment you have ever had.

Q. What are the advantages of dental implant treatment?

The benefits of having dental implants are that you will have a full set of natural looking teeth again, your bone tissue and jaw structure will be much stronger, you will also have received treatment for any gum disease or tooth decay, you will have much better oral and overall wellbeing, and your facial appearance will look much more brighter and attractive. You will also feel a lot more confident when you smile.

Q. How do I look after my bridge?

You need to clean your bridge every day, to prevent problems such as bad breath and gum disease. You also have to clean under the false tooth every day. Your dentist or hygienist will show you how to use a bridge needle or special floss, as a normal toothbrush cannot reach.

Q. Are there other methods for fixing false teeth?

There are other methods, such as using a combination of crowns and partial dentures that can keep the retaining clips out of sight. These are quite specialised dentures, so you should ask your dentist about them. You can also have teeth implanted, ask your dentist for more information. Remember that it’s as important to care for your remaining teeth as it is to replace the missing ones.

Q. Are there different types of bridge?

Yes, there are different types of bridge which use different fixing methods. Your dentist will choose the most effective and conservative bridge for your personal situation.