Filling the gaps in your smile, restoring confidence and healthy function with dental bridges
Tooth loss is not a “normal” part of aging. And by partnering with Dr. William E. Wyatt, Jr. and our team at Flower Mound Dental, it never has to be in your future. You can keep all of your teeth with proactive, gentle, fear-free dentistry. Now, should we be unable to preserve a badly broken or deeply infected tooth, our team also takes a proactive stance to replace teeth and restore smiles among our valued patients in North Texas.
It is essential to discuss options, such as dental bridges, promptly. Tooth loss not only mars the appearance of your smile and your ability to “use” your remaining teeth. It also adversely affects the bone in the jaw. Without stimulation from the teeth, the bone shrinks. If you don’t use it, you lose it! Bone loss can prematurely “age” your face and hasten the functional and health effects associated with tooth loss.
Dental bridge design
The dental bridge procedure has been used to replace teeth for many years. It is a permanent option requiring little maintenance, compared to removable dental prosthetics, such as conventional removable partials or full/complete dentures. The design of a dental bridge depends on the presence of some healthy teeth in the mouth. Notably, the neighboring teeth are used to support the replacement tooth. These teeth are called “abutments”; they anchor the “pontic” or prosthetic tooth.
The abutments are crowned to properly support the pontic over the long term. All teeth that are crowned must be reduced in size and reshaped. This step is necessary to ensure each crown properly fits on top of the tooth. The crowns and the pontic are then fused together. Once placed over the reduced abutment teeth, the pontic fills the space and replaces the natural tooth. The abutments, then, anchor or hold up the pontic.
Bridges may also be used to replace more than one tooth. Your suitability for this treatment depends on factors such as the health and location of the remaining teeth in your mouth. Generally, bridges can last for many years with good brushing and flossing at home and regular visits to our Flower Mound, Texas office for professional cleanings and exams. We can also advise on ways to properly clean underneath the bridge. The space may be tight. So, patients find interdental brushes and floss threaders to be helpful and to ensure all plaque & food particles have been removed.
Dr. Wyatt can also discuss modern alternatives to conventional dental bridges during your consultation. These include dental implant-supported crowns, bridges, and dentures. Instead of relying on other teeth for support, these prosthetics are held in place by implants. Positioned in the jawbone, implants function like tooth roots. This alternative also does not require the removal of tooth structure from otherwise healthy teeth, as is the case with dental bridges that use crowned abutments.
Call (972) 351-8555 with questions or to book your appointment today!