Dentists define common words differently than most folks. Most people who hear the word calculus think of a challenging math class. Dentists use that word to mean hardened, dental plaque. Either way, calculus is hard.
Most people who hear the word bridge may have images of the Brooklyn Bridge or Golden Gate. When dentists hear the word, they think of replacing the gaps in a patient’s smile.
And even though you may feel you deserve to wear a crown, you may need to be content by just having one in your mouth.
What is a dental bridge? How does the process work? What is the difference between a bridge and a crown? Read on to learn about this complicated dental procedure.
If you have a missing tooth, or if you are missing several teeth in a row, your doctor may recommend that you have a bridge made to fill in the gaps. This process will take several appointments to complete.
During the first appointment, your dentist will make an impression of the area of your mouth where your teeth are missing. This impression or mold will allow a temporary bridge to be built while the permanent one is being formed.
Next, the teeth surrounding the gap will be prepared to make sure they will provide an adequate structure to support your new fake teeth. Your supporting teeth may need to be reduced in size. This can put those healthy teeth at risk.
After the surrounding teeth are prepared, another impression is made of the area. This is the critical impression because the new false teeth will be made based on this mold.
Before your dentist sends you home, he or she may place a temporary bridge in the gap. You will return to your dentist to receive your new bridge as soon as it is completed.
Issues you may have with your bridge
You may be at risk of experiencing bone loss underneath your bridge because a bridge does not replace the roots of the teeth. It is also essential that you clean around your bridge often to prevent bacteria from having a party on the healthy tissue surrounding it.
Your dentist may feel that your damaged tooth should not be removed entirely, which would necessitate having a bridge or an implant. Instead, he or she may recommend that you instead have a crown.
A crown is essentially a cap that fits over a damaged tooth to restore look and function. It prevents further damage or decay of the tooth as well.
There are several other benefits of having a crown over a bridge. A crown does not require the removal of any part of the neighboring teeth. It can be cared for the same way as your natural teeth.
Before you make your decision, talk with the insurance expert at your dental office and consult your bank balance. Your dentist will make sure you understand your financial responsibility for the procedure before you begin.