Many people end up losing a tooth due to accident, tooth decay or injury. A missing tooth not only affects the way you look, it can also affect the way you talk and create problems with your chewing ability. The missing tooth can also cause other surrounding teeth to shift their position which can make it difficult for you to clean the teeth leading to tooth decay.
However, thanks to the advances that dentistry has made in the last few decades, it is now possible to replace a false tooth in the gap created by a missing tooth. This can be done by way of a dental bridge.
A dental bridge is nothing but a false tooth supported by two crowns that is used to fill the gap in your teeth. A bridge is a permanent fixture in your mouth, and cannot be removed like a denture. Usually the crowns are anchored to adjacent teeth by means of metal bands that are fixed using resin or cement.
If you take good care of your oral hygiene, then a dental bridge can easily last for around 10 to 15 years without requiring replacement.
Depending on what suits the patient, the dentist choose from the three types of available dental bridges, namely the traditional fixed bridge, the resin bonded bridge and the cantilever bridge. The type of bridge to be used is decided based on the quality and health of the teeth on either side of the missing tooth, and where gap is in the mouth.
Usually the patient would need two sitting in order to have a dental bridge fixed. In the first sitting, the doctor will prepare the natural teeth for the bridge, and take measurements of the crowns. Also, a mold of the teeth is taken to create the metal framework to support the crowns. In the next sitting, which is usually two weeks after the first, the bridge is fixed. Once the patient is happy with the fit and has worn it for a few weeks, the bridge if permanently fixed in the mouth.
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