Dental Bridges Tampa, FL

Missing teeth can wreak havoc on your oral health. They can cause malocclusion and contribute to dental decay and gum disease. Missing teeth can also result in lower confidence and self-esteem, causing you to avoid sharing your smile with those around you.

Thankfully, your Tampa dentist can help you replace missing teeth with a fixed dental bridge – and, in the process, restore your beautiful smile.

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What Is a Dental Bridge?

A dental bridge is a cost-effective treatment option to replace missing teeth.

The most common type of bridge is a three-unit bridge. It consists of three components fused together – two abutment crowns and a pontic (fake tooth). The abutment crowns fit over the teeth adjacent to your missing tooth, while the pontic fits into the empty space.

There are different types of bridges to fit the various needs of a patient. Your Tampa dentist will recommend the best option for your needs.

The Benefits of Dental Bridges in Tampa

One of the main reasons to invest in a dental bridge is because it can restore your smile by replacing a missing tooth (or teeth).

A dental bridge can serve another important purpose – it can prevent the teeth adjacent to the missing tooth from shifting.

Teeth naturally shift to fill in an empty space, but it can throw your whole bite off when this happens. When your teeth are out of alignment, it places excess pressure on certain teeth instead of promoting a balanced bite. The excess pressure can cause those teeth to chip, crack, and even fracture. In some cases, the crack or fracture is so severe that it can lead to the loss of a tooth.

Misalignment can also cause muscle tension and damage to the jaw joints, resulting in a painful condition called TMJ disorder.

Types of Dental Bridges in Tampa

Depending on your unique dental needs, your Tampa dentist may recommend one or more of the following types of bridges to replace a missing tooth.

Traditional Dental Bridge

Dr. Nicholas M. Kavouklis may recommend a traditional bridge if the teeth adjacent to the missing tooth are healthy. The bone surrounding those teeth must also be healthy and strong to support the three-unit appliance.

Cantilever Bridge

A cantilever bridge is typically used to replace missing anterior teeth. This bridge is only supported from one side instead of two.

Implant-Supported Bridge

If you’re missing multiple teeth, you might consider an implant-supported bridge. An implant bridge helps stabilize the bone and prevent additional bone loss after an extraction. It’s also typically more affordable than replacing each tooth with an implant and crown.

Two implants are placed in the jawbone, leaving space between them. A traditional three-unit bridge is fabricated, with the abutment crowns fitting over the implants.

Maryland Bridge

A Maryland bridge is another bridge to replace missing anterior teeth. The bridge consists of a single pontic (fake tooth) with wings or arms on the back. The wings/arms clasp onto the back of the adjacent teeth and are cemented or bonded into place.

What to Expect During Your Bridge Preparation Appointment

To start, your dentist will ensure that your teeth and gums are fully numb so you can remain comfortable throughout the procedure.

Once you’re numb, your Tampa dentist will reduce the circumference and height of the teeth adjacent to the missing tooth. Removing some of the existing tooth structure allows the abutment crowns to fit onto the teeth.

Then, your dentist will take an impression of the teeth, which will be sent to a dental laboratory. A lab technician will fabricate the dental bridge in porcelain, metal, or porcelain fused to metal.

Before you leave, your dentist will fabricate a temporary bridge you can wear until your permanent bridge is returned from the lab.

What to Expect When Your Bridge Is Delivered

When the lab tech is finished with your bridge, we’ll remove your temporary bridge and try the new one on to see how it fits. Your Tampa dentist will check the abutment crowns’ margins to ensure they fit the teeth perfectly. They’ll also check the bite and adjust it if necessary. Your dentist will also evaluate the shade of the porcelain to ensure it matches your natural teeth. Finally, they’ll bond or cement the bridge into place.

Restore Your Smile and Good Oral Health with a Dental Bridge in Tampa

Some people think a missing tooth isn’t a big deal. The truth is that failing to restore a missing tooth can contribute to further dental damage, leading to painful conditions and tooth loss. Replacing a missing tooth isn’t just about restoring your smile – it’s about restoring your oral health and preventing problems down the road.

Do you have a missing tooth you would like to restore? Contact us to find out whether you’re a good candidate for a dental implant or dental bridge in Tampa.

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