Dental Tips Blog

Aug
22

Is a Dental Bridge Right for You?

Posted in Dental Bridges

Dental bridges work just like road ones do…but with an extra feature. They span a gap to connect Point A and Point B while suspending a replacement tooth in the middle.

Should you replace your missing tooth with a bridge?

What Makes Up a Dental Bridge?

Dental bridges are made the same way dental crowns are. A bridge is just two crowns bonded over (abutment) teeth on either side of a gap. A false tooth is attached between the crowns.

You may get a bridge made entirely out of a durable metal, like gold. Most people, however, prefer the natural look of porcelain.

Some bridges are made of a combination of materials: a metal base that anchors to the teeth covered with a porcelain layer for aesthetics.

Dental Bridges: the Pros and Cons

First, a few of the benefits.

Bridges work great for anyone who doesn’t want the hassle of a removable partial denture. Once the bridge is in place, it stays there for good. A bridge will also help maintain your tooth alignment, preventing other teeth from shifting into the empty gap. Finally, bridges help prevent food from packing into the gums.

Now here’s why you may want to consider bridge alternatives:

Like other dental restorations, a bridge won’t last forever. It will eventually need to be replaced. Also, to get a bridge, you have to crown at least two teeth, and if they’re healthy teeth, crowning will only weaken them unnecessarily. While bridges even out your bite, they don’t keep the gum and bone in the gap from shrinking.

Ask your dentist whether a bridge is the best option for replacing your lost tooth.

Posted on behalf of:
Mitzi Morris, DMD, PC
1295 Hembree Rd B202
Roswell, GA 30076
(770) 475-6767

May
6

Should You Get a Dental Bridge?

Posted in Dental Bridges

People have relied on dental bridges for decades. Not just patients as a whole – some individuals have literally had a fixed dental bridge hold up for years!

A dental bridge is a false tooth suspended between functional dental crowns, and it’s a great way to fill in a gap left by missing teeth. Completing your smile with this restoration isn’t the only solution, however.

How do you know if a dental bridge is right for you?

When a Bridge Is a Good Idea

People who aren’t able to have dental implant surgery usually opt for a dental bridge. They could be limited by the cost or by their health. Getting a bridge is more conservative budget-wise

A bridge is often the preferred alternative to a removable partial denture. If you don’t want to deal with the hassle (and occasional embarrassment) of wearing a removable appliance, then you might like a fixed bridge.

Cons of a Dental Bridge

Dental bridges can be a little tricky to clean underneath. But daily cleaning is essential to keeping the gums and neighboring teeth healthy. There are special floss and flossing tools designed for wiping away plaque and food from under a bridge.

The biggest downside to a bridge is that it often requires one or two healthy teeth to be trimmed down for crowns. The bridge needs something for support! But using those teeth for crowns could wind up shortening their lifespan.

Ultimately, it’s up to you and your dentist to figure out which restorative solution is best for your smile. Your dentist will explain how your lifestyle, health, and the shape of your factor into the decision.

Contact your dentist today to schedule a consultation.

Posted on behalf of:
Gilreath Dental Associates
200 White St NW
Marietta, GA 30060
(770) 514-122

Nov
30

Your Bridge Just Fell Off: What Comes Next?

Posted in Dental Bridges

Great. You’re in the middle of a meal when something feels “off” in your mouth. You’ve excused yourself and stepped aside to the bathroom to find out what’s going on. With a gentle nudge of your finger, you notice that your dental bridge is rocking out of place. In fact, it’s completely lifting off of your teeth. You decide it’s best to not accidentally swallow it, so you’ve picked it up off your teeth and set it in a cup.

What Now?

Is it best to pop over to the grocery store to find some temporary cement and reattach your crown? You’re not sure, so the next thing to do is call your dentist. If the bridge is in an area that’s not visible when you smile — and you’re not in pain — your dentist will book you for an appointment at your next earliest convenience.

Bring Your Bridge with You

Your dentist will need to find out what made your bridge fall off. In most cases, it’s not because you were chewing on it too hard or flossing underneath it. Rather, it’s likely that the bond between your bridge and the tooth underneath it began to leak. This allowed new bacteria to seep in, causing erosion of the healthy tooth structure underneath. Either your bridge was getting pretty old and had already “put in its time” or you might not have been keeping it very clean with floss each day.

If your teeth are still healthy, your dentist may be able to clean out your bridge and re-cement it permanently to your teeth. Otherwise, the prosthesis might need to be replaced with something else.

Posted on behalf of:
Green Dental of Alexandria
1725 Duke St
Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 549-1725

Sep
19

4 Ways to Keep a Dental Bridge Clean and Healthy

Posted in Dental Bridges

Dental bridges are usually made from two teeth with crowns supporting a false tooth between them. This artificial tooth (pontic) is suspended over the gums and fills in the gap where another tooth is missing.

Whether you have a dental bridge already or are planning to get one, it’s important that you know how to take care of it. That way, you’ll keep your gums and the rest of your teeth healthy for years to come.

Follow these steps to get the most out of your new bridge…

  1. Take A New Approach To Brushing

When you brush around your bridge, don’t forget to tilt the bristles in from all angles. You don’t want to brush only the side of your teeth. Tipping your toothbrush just under the pontic will help you access any bacteria and food debris hiding there.

  1. Find The Right Flossing Device

Regular floss is fine for your other teeth, but your bridge needs extra attention. To get a deeper clean under the pontic, choose a textured floss that you can easily slip under the bridge. You may even find that a powered water flosser is the easiest way for you to get the job done.

  1. Don’t Neglect The Crowns

Flossing carefully around your crowned teeth at either end of your bridge is extremely important! If those teeth develop cavities, your whole bridge could fail.

  1. Rinse Well!

Talk with your dentist about finding the right mouthwash. Some rinses have antibacterial properties which will control plaque and reduce inflammation in the gums around your bridge. Others have fluoride which will reinforce those crowned teeth against decay.

For more tips on keeping your bridge strong, see your local dentist.

Posted on behalf of:
Mundo Dentistry
3463 US-21 #101
Fort Mill, SC 29715
(704) 825-2018

Jul
12

Should You Get a Fixed or Removable Dental Bridge?

Posted in Dental Bridges

Dental bridges have been closing gaps in smiles for decades. They make the most of existing teeth to provide a complete bite and leave a lot of room for variety.

A couple of these varieties include fixed and removable bridges. What should you know about each?

Fixed Bridges

A fixed dental bridge is discreet and secure. It’s made from attaching a fake tooth between two dental crowns that are cemented to the natural teeth on either side of the gap.

You won’t need to worry about this restoration falling out. Also, it looks so normal that probably no one would ever know you were missing a tooth.

On the downside, you have to clean under your bridge every day, which can be tricky. Additionally, you might have to crown two otherwise perfectly healthy teeth just to support the bridge.

Removable Bridges (“Partials”)

These bridges are usually made from a metal framework that rests on crowned or natural teeth for support. It’s like a partial denture that sits on only a couple teeth. You’ll wear it even while you eat, although it may take a bit of practice first. Sometimes, the bridge can even be made from tissue-colored acrylic.

Advantages of Removable Bridges:

– Don’t damage existing teeth

– Easier to clean

– More convenient; you can keep using it if you later decide to go through the dental implant process

Disadvantages:

– May be visible to others

– Takes some time to get used to the feel

Your lifestyle, oral health needs, and oral hygiene routine will all help determine whether a fixed or removable bridge is right for your smile.

Ask your dentist about which tooth replacement option is best for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Moores Chapel Dentistry
9115 Samlen Lane #105
Charlotte, NC 28214
(704) 389-9299

Jun
28

What You Should Think About Before Getting a Dental Bridge

Posted in Dental Bridges

For decades, dental bridges have restored smiles around the world. But before you decide to fill the gap in your smile with a dental bridge, take some time to consider the following questions.

How Will This Affect My Other Teeth?

A dental bridge is simply two dental crowns that rest on the teeth on either side of the gap. Between them, they support one or two false teeth which hang suspended over the gums. Dental crowns are not permanent. With time, the crowns supporting your bridge will need to be replaced. Every time they are replaced, those teeth will get weaker.

It’s one thing if the teeth around the gap have damage or decay. But if they’re perfectly healthy, why crown them? They will last much longer if left as they are.

Do I Need A More Permanent Solution?

As mentioned above, your bridge won’t last forever. If you want a solution that you never have to worry about again, dental implants may be right for you.

Dental implants still require some care, but as long as you’re healthy, they will likely never need to be replaced.

Can I Keep A Bridge Clean?

A dental bridge is the fastest and simplest option for restoring a secure bite. If you choose to get one, you should be prepared to take good care of it so that it lasts as long as possible. Cleaning your bridge is not as simple as brushing it. You’ll need to access the underside of it in addition to flossing around the crowns.

Talk with your dentist about the tooth replacement option that’s right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Dentistry of Highland Village
3651 Weslayan St. #208
Houston, TX 77027
(713) 360-7700

May
1

Is a Dental Bridge a Good Idea? Questions to Ask Yourself

Posted in Dental Bridges

Lots of patients choose to replace missing teeth by spanning the gap with a dental bridge, also called partial dentures. What works for one person doesn’t mean it’s the solution for everyone, however.

Here are some things to consider when you’re planning to replace a few missing teeth with partial dentures.

How Long Do You Want the Restoration to Last?

Some people are under the mistaken opinion that a bridge is the ultimate solution. They feel that once it’s in place, it’s not going anywhere. That’s not exactly true.

As with any other dental restoration, a bridge will wear down and need an update, at some point down the road. The issue here is that every time your bridge is replaced, it weakens the teeth that anchor it in place.

Can You Keep a Bridge Clean?

A bridge is a great way to restore your bite so that you can chew with confidence. As long as you are able to take good care of your bridge, it will last you a long time. Proper care includes flossing around the teeth that support the bridge and cleaning underneath it, as well.

Will Your Other Teeth Support a Bridge?

Sometimes, the teeth on either side of the gap are just too weak to survive the process of having crowns placed on them. If your dentist determines that to be the case, he or she will let you know what your other options are.

Your Best Smile Restoration Option

Eventually, some patients decide that a removable partial denture is best for them. Others prefer the permanence and convenience of dental implants. Consult your dentist to find out whether or not a bridge is right for you.

Posted on behalf of:
Group Health Dental
230 W 41st St
New York, NY 10036
(212) 398-9690

Apr
5

Techniques to Clean Under Your Fixed Bridge

Posted in Dental Bridges

Having a traditional or implant-supported bridge is a great way to replace your missing teeth. Unfortunately for some, it can also pose a slight barrier when it comes to routine oral hygiene. Since it’s not possible to clean bridges the exact same way as a natural tooth, there are a couple of different options available:

1. Floss Threaders

Traditional flossing is still an option – thanks to floss threaders. These enlarged sewing-needle style threaders allow you to loop floss directly under the bridge. Slide the floss back and forth along your restoration, as well as tightly against the abutment teeth. If you have a bit more space, consider trying a tufted floss.

2. Water Flossers

Although they’re a bit messy at first, water flossers are an efficient and easy way to clean around bridges – or any other tooth for that matter. Depending on the model, you may be able to adjust the pressure or temperature of the water for your comfort. There are even versions available to hook up inside of your shower!

3. Proxy-Brushes

The small tips look like a piece of pipe cleaner attached to a toothbrush handle. Depending on the spacing under your bridge, a proxy-brush may be one of the easiest ways for you to clean under the prosthesis and against the inside of the supporting teeth.

Keeping your bridge thoroughly clean each day ensures that the teeth (or implants) that support it will stay healthy for as long as possible. Be sure to schedule a routine cleaning with your hygienist to remove any hard-to-reach tartar that may have built up between visits.

Posted on behalf of:
Gold Hill Dentistry
2848 Pleasant Road #104
Fort Mill, York County, South Carolina 29708
(803) 566-8055

May
30

3 Oral Hygiene Aids That People with Bridges Can’t Live Without

Posted in Dental Bridges

Your bridge is a big responsibility. It cannot simply be placed and then forgotten. A bridge represents a long-term investment that must be maintained, if it is to last. If neglected, a bridge could eventually fail, resulting in the need for more-involved treatment. The longer you care for your bridge, the longer you will enjoy its support. Let’s now review three oral hygiene devices that are essential to maintaining healthy teeth and gums around a bridge.

Tufted Floss

This floss allows you slip one stiffened end underneath your bridge, and carefully sweep a fluffy, fibrous segment underneath the false tooth. The absorbent segment on tufted floss is gentle on gums.

Water Flosser

This automated device is designed to propel water along the gum line and between teeth to help flush out bacteria not removed through flossing. This water flow is particularly helpful around bridges, which can be difficult to access with floss.

Floss Threader

This simple plastic needle makes it easier for you to slip floss under your bridge so that you can keep the “anchor teeth” clean, below the gum line.

Taking good care of your bridge may sound like a chore, but it is well worth your time and effort. If you would like to find out more about the options available for cleaning your bridge, ask your local dentist for suggestions. Your dentist or hygienist will be able to evaluate your technique and make recommendations for adjusting the way you clean your bridge. Take advantage of the help offered at your dentist’s office to get the most out of your bridge!

Posted on behalf of:
Mitzi Morris, DMD, PC
1295 Hembree Rd B202
Roswell, GA 30076
(770) 475-6767

May
21

Keeping Your Bridge Clean

Posted in Dental Bridges

Like any dental restoration, it is important to keep the area around a dental bridge clean so that new decay or gum disease does not develop around this large restoration. Unlike other types of treatments, bridges require some additional steps for effective oral care, because they affect more than one tooth under a single restoration.

Bridges span from one tooth, across an open space, to another tooth. That means food and bacteria can accumulate under the bridge as well as under the gum pockets on the interior surfaces of the teeth that support the bridge. Because of this, bridge teeth are more susceptible to recurrent tooth decay, bone loss and periodontal disease if not cared for properly. Cleaning them routinely each day is essential for the long term life of the teeth and the bridge.

To clean under the bridge, most dentists recommend using a floss threader to weave floss under the bridge and through to the other side. Then the floss should be wrapped around each tooth and slid up and down under the gums, across the bottom of the bridge, and in the gum pocket of the other tooth. Other types of oral hygiene devices that can clean areas under the bridge include water flossers or proxa brushes (when there is excess space under the bridge.)

The better you care for your bridge and the supporting teeth, the longer it will function for you. Routine preventive cleanings can help screen for problems and remove tartar buildup from areas that are more difficult to reach. If you have problems cleaning your bridge, ask your hygienist about different techniques or tools available to access these unique restorations.

Posted on behalf of Dr. David Janash, Park South Dentistry

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