Dental Bridges in Jonesboro, AR
I lost a tooth! Now what?
Even though our goal is to keep your teeth healthy and functional for your entire life, there are some things we cannot control that can cause you to lose a tooth. If you have lost a tooth for any reason, the next step is to look at what your options are to replace it if you need to do so.
Cosmetic appearance is the most common reason people want to replace a missing tooth. If the missing tooth shows in your smile, replacing it will be high priority. Even if it doesn’t show, however, there are many reasons to replace a tooth. A missing tooth can affect your ability to eat, and there is uncertainty of how your teeth will shift and space out to accommodate the loss.
Many great options are available to replace a missing tooth, including dental implants and bridges. Let’s talk about dental bridges.
What is a bridge?
A dental bridge is a tooth prosthetic, like a crown, that is used to replace one or more missing teeth. A bridge uses strong healthy teeth on either side of the missing tooth to support the missing tooth replacement.
Each dental bridge we do in our Jonesboro dental office is custom created by one of the amazing dental labs we partner with to fit your teeth and bite. When complete, the bridge will be permanently fixed to your teeth and will not come out.
Advantages to a bridge:
- It feels like your teeth – Because the bridge is custom fit to your teeth and gum tissue, it will look and feel like a natural tooth.
- It won’t come out - Once cemented, the bridge is a part of you. This means you do not have to take it out twice a day to brush around it or worry about getting food stuck under it.
- You’ll see immediate results – On the day the procedure is started, you will leave with a tooth in the space. A temporary bridge will be made to chew and smile with until the custom permanent is complete.
Disadvantages to a bridge:
- A problem with one is a problem with all – A bridge is one piece, which means if you get a cavity or have a problem with one of the teeth supporting the bridge then the whole thing will likely need to be replaced.
- Bridges are not as conservative as implant treatment - A bridge usually requires us to remove some healthy tooth structure from the teeth on either side to support it (this is not the case if those teeth already require major repair such as crowns).
What are my other options?
Dental implants are currently the best option for replacement of teeth. Implants provide the most natural feeling and function of any tooth replacement. They also are independent of other teeth, so replacement with implants doesn’t require that you lose good natural tooth structure.
For many teeth, removable partial dentures are an option. This is not usually recommended for replacement of one tooth, unless it is in the front. Partials are the main alternative to implants for cases where all back teeth have been lost.
If you are unsure, we can help you decide which route is best for you. Call our Jonesboro dental office today to learn more about your options and get a professional recommendation from Dr. Brett Burris or Dr. Lauren Harmon.