Dental Bridges in Racine
Missing teeth, whether through accident, injury or disease, is a problem for many dental patients, and one that needs to be fixed. A bridge is one of the options available to replace one or more missing teeth. Replacing lost teeth is important, because your jaw is meant to function with a full set of teeth. Leaving gaps or spaces where teeth have been can result in the shifting of surrounding teeth, bone loss in the jaw, and the eventual loss of other teeth due to resulting gum disease and/or decay. It also can lead to TMJ disorder, a painful condition of the jaw joint. There are other concerns for patients who are missing teeth, such as difficulty chewing and speaking, and the effect a missing tooth may have on your appearance.
A bridge is one way to replace a missing tooth. It consists of an artificial replacement tooth that sits in the gap, called a pontic. It is connected on either side by crowns to its neighboring teeth, thus “bridging” the space. This is also called a fixed, or non-removable, bridge and is often made from gold, other precious metals or alloys, porcelain, or a combination of those materials. The presence of the artificial tooth prevents the teeth around it from shifting into the gap, provides adequate pressure for chewing, allows you to speak more naturally, and preserves the appearance of your smile.
More Replacement Options
In some cases, a removable partial denture or individual dental implants may be a better choice than a bridge. Removable partial dentures may be more appropriate when replacing many teeth, or implants may be necessary if the teeth that would normally anchor a bridge are not strong enough to do so on their own. Each bridge, denture or replacement tooth is custom-designed and fabricated to match your precise needs by Dr. Gould with the dental laboratory technician utilizing advanced imaging and milling technologies and other ceramic processes.
Dr. Gould’s recommendations for patients depend on their individual treatment needs, and one style of bridge may be better suited than another to each situation. Factors in treatment include the location of the missing teeth, the strength and health of nearby teeth, and other dental and medical history.
Getting A Bridge
The process of replacing a missing tooth or teeth with a bridge involves shaping the anchor teeth to serve as sound support for the resulting bridge. Detailed impressions of the teeth are made from which the final bridge is fabricated, and the color of the teeth is determined, so that the final bridge blends with the adjacent teeth most naturally. A temporary bridge is fabricated and placed on the anchor teeth to protect them between appointments while the bridge is being crafted to precise specifications in the dental laboratory. At the following appointment the bridge is tried in and if the fit, feel and appearance are optimal, it is bonded to place with an adhesive. Chewing ability, comfort and a beautiful smile have been restored!
To maintain bridgework, as with natural teeth and other dental restorations, thorough daily care and regular professional preventive cleanings are important. Your bridge will serve you well for many years with ongoing care. Dr. Gould and his team are happy to talk with you about bridges and other dental restoration techniques and treatments, to find the solution that is best for your personal needs. We focus on delivering compassionate, friendly care that’s never rushed, always making sure you have the time you need with Dr. Gould. Get in touch by calling our Racine office or contacting us online anytime. You can enjoy the confidence a healthy, attractive smile engenders!