All of your teeth play an important role in speaking, chewing and in maintaining proper alignment of other teeth. Tooth loss doesn’t necessarily have to occur as you age, but if you do lose teeth they must be replaced to maintain proper function of your mouth. Fortunately, Dr. Lester offers many options for correcting tooth loss.
A bridge is a dental appliance that fills a space that a tooth previously occupied. A bridge may be necessary to prevent shifting of the teeth that can lead to bite problems (occlusion) and/or jaw problems. Increased risk of gum disease has proven to be one of the worst side effects of missing teeth and can be minimized with a bridge.
Bridges safeguard the integrity of existing teeth and help maintain a healthy, vibrant smile.
There are two main types of bridges, Dr. Lester may recommend any one of the following:
A Fixed bridge this is the most popular and consists of a filler (porcelain) tooth that is attached to two crowns, which fit over the existing teeth and hold the bridge in place.
A Cantilever bridge is often used in the front where there is one missing tooth. The tooth next to the missing tooth is crowned and a false (porcelain) tooth is attached to the crown. This is an option only in front as the posterior or back portion of your mouth is used for much heavier chewing. A cantilever bridge cannot take the forces applied to the back teeth. A cantilever bridge is cemented in and is not removable.
A third type of bridge is an implant supported bridge. This is a bridge placed on implants when several teeth are missing.