When we see patients with a single missing tooth, or up to three in a row, we may suggest a prosthetic known as a dental bridge to restore their smile. We have two options available, one secured with crowns and another secured with dental implants. In today’s blog, your Allen, TX, dentist will look at how we create a custom bridge.
Addressing Minor Tooth Loss
Even the loss of a single tooth could lead to pretty severe complications for your smile. For example, surrounding teeth could drift from position as a result of the gap in your smile. The misalignment that develops could then increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Missing teeth also upset bite balance and strain the jaw joints, meaning the risk of TMJ disorder and bruxism (chronic teeth grinding) increases as well. If your tooth loss worsens, then you could have trouble eating and speaking. In fact, the tooth loss could worsen since the body suspends the flow of key nutrients to the jawbone around a missing root. The jawbone loses mass and density, breaking down to cause further tooth loss.
Designing a Prosthetic
For between one and three lost teeth, we could suggest a bridge. The prosthetic consists of one or more replacement teeth, which we refer to as pontics, with crowns attached to each end. We design and fabricate the prosthetic using advanced digital imaging technology and durable, lifelike materials. We color-match it to blend with your smile too.
For the crown-secured version, we remove structure from the natural teeth sitting on each side of the gap. Known as abutment teeth, we will place the crowns of the prosthetic onto them, securing your bridge firmly in place. This is the most common version, and one that could last about 10 to 15 years on average, requiring replacement as the jaw ridge changes shape over time.
For a more durable version, our team could instead insert one or more dental implants into the gaps of your smile. We then attach the crowns to them, so we don’t need to remove structure from healthy teeth. The implants act as new roots, which stimulates then growth of bone tissue. As a result, your bridge could last for decades to come, possibly even a lifetime. If you have any questions about addressing your missing teeth, or about how we ensure your new ones will look completely natural, then contact our team today.
Do You Have a Missing Tooth?
Our team is ready to help you obtain a complete smile again with a custom-made prosthetic. To learn more about tackling the loss of one or more teeth, then contact Allen Family Dental in Allen, TX today by calling 469-342-6644.