A dental bridge, provided at our Plano, Texas practice serving Richardson, Frisco and McKinney, can replace missing teeth and give you a complete, natural-looking smile.To place a dental bridge, the teeth adjacent to the missing tooth are crowned so a false tooth can be attached in-between. This "bridges" the gap to replace the missing tooth. This is known as a fixed bridge and cannot be taken out of your mouth. If you are missing one or more teeth, you may benefit from a dental bridge. To learn more about this restorative option, contact our Plano dental office today.
How is a Dental Bridge Accomplished?
First, we prepare the teeth adjacent to the missing tooth by reducing them in size to accommodate for the thickness of the crown that will be placed. Then we take an optical laser scan of the new shape of the teeth and through CAD/CAM technology, make a model which exactly duplicates your mouth. From this model the bridge is made by my dental laboratory. A temporary bridge will be placed for you to wear while your permanent bridge is being made. This temporary bridge will serve to protect your teeth and gums.
On your second appointment, the temporary bridge will be removed. Your new permanent bridge will be placed and checked. With the new CAD/CAM system, no more than a few adjustments are usually needed due to the technology's amazing accuracy. Your new bridge will then be bonded to your teeth.
Why Do I Need A Bridge?
Teeth are made to support each other. If a tooth is missing, the other teeth will drift or move over time. When this happens your bite will change. This can lead to multiple problems such as:
- Decreased ability to chew your food
- TMJ joint pain
- Teeth migration, which can affect how well you teeth look
- Food traps, which can lead to bacterial build up and infection
How Much do Dental Bridges Cost?
Typically dental bridge cost ranges from $1100 to $1500 per tooth depending on the material used. So to replace a single missing tooth you need to make three crowns - the two adjacent teeth and the missing tooth you are replacing. Dental insurance typically pays for about half of the cost of the bridge.
We are now doing fewer bridges than we did years ago because of dental implants, primarily due to cost. The expenses of dental implants have decreased through the years, which make them a more attractive option for many patients. While the initial cost of replacing a missing tooth with an implant is slightly higher, the long term cost is often much less. Once an implant is placed it does not need to be done again, while the longevity of a fixed bridge is 10 - 20 years and most likely will have to be re-made one or more times in your lifetime.
Advantages of Dental Bridges:
- Bridges are natural in appearance
- Usually require only two visits to be placed
- Initial cost is less when compared with implants
Disadvantages of Having a Dental Bridge:
- Potentially much greater long term cost as compared with implants
- Can not easily floss around the bridge, as the teeth are fused together
- Potentially more sensitivity for awhile, since the adjacent teeth have been crowned
- Patients are often hesitant to crown the adjacent teeth especially if they are in their original condition
Look in the gallery section of this web site to see some bridges I have previously made. Please feel free to call our office in Plano, Texas at 972-985-0005 so we can discuss if a dental bridge is appropriate for your dental needs.