If you have a gap in your teeth (from one or more missing teeth), you have a few options for fixing it. Leaving it untreated is not recommended because doing so can allow the remaining teeth to shift in position, altering your bite and potentially your jaw structure. One very effective treatment is fixed dental bridges in Houston, TX. These dental bridges near you is a dental prosthetic that fills in a gap by relying on the neighboring teeth, just as a bridge across a river does.
A traditional bridge is made up of the pontic, or artificial tooth, that is attached to the abutments, or anchor teeth, which usually are two crowns. To have a bridge placed, the abutment teeth have to be prepared to receive crowns. Impressions will then be taken of the prepared teeth and gap and sent to a dental laboratory where the bridge will be created. It is fixed in the mouth by being cemented into place.
A full crown requires a tooth to be filed down a portion to allow room for the crown to fit. As an alternative to this treatment, a dental implant is sometimes recommended as it will aid in oral hygiene and allows the teeth surrounding the missing tooth to last longer.
A cantilever bridge requires only one abutment, so it is often used when the missing tooth has a tooth remaining on only one side of it (such as when the gap is at the end of the line of teeth). The pontic hangs off the abutment.
A Maryland bonded bridge is the most conservative in altering or reducing the structure of the abutment teeth. It involves little preparation of retaining teeth as it is basically cemented or glued on using metal wings.
Although it may need replacing after a time, a fixed bridge – when cared for properly – can last in excess of ten years. It not only restores a smile, but it can also restore the ability to speak properly as well as chew and enjoy food as before. The most important effect it has on oral health is that it prevents the remaining teeth from moving and preserves your biting forces.