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How A Dental Bridge Can Help Maintain Your Smile

How A Dental Bridge Can Help Maintain Your Smile

What is a Dental Bridge?

A bridge is two or more crowns that are placed to fill a gap in your smile.  These crowns are often made from porcelain, gold, alloy or a combination of these materials and are anchored to the teeth next to the gap.

Types of Bridges

The kind of bridge that your dentist will fit you with will most likely be based on the location of your teeth loss. The types of bridges available include:

  • Traditional Bridges – A traditional bridge is often made of porcelain and affixed to a metal or ceramic piece that is then anchored to teeth on both sides of the gap. This is most often done for gaps where there are still teeth on either side.
  • Cantilever Bridges – These type of bridges use the same materials but are only anchored on one side.  This type is not recommended for the back teeth as it is easier to damage when chewing.
  • Resin-bonded or Maryland Bridges – This type of bridge is often made with porcelain and metal or even plastic and is affixed to the teeth by either a porcelain or metal wing on one side of the bridge.

How Can a Bridge Help Your Appearance?

Bridges restore your overall facial appearance, aid in speech and chewing, and help you maintain a healthy smile. When you loose teeth, you are creating a hole in your natural smile which can lead to movement in the jaw as well as the face. By placing bridges where you have missing teeth, you can

Help restore your face’s natural shape

Your teeth help to provide structural support for the other bone structures in your face as well as the skin and muscles that make up your face shape. When you are missing teeth, the supporting structures in your face can begin to shift which can cause signs of aging, sagging skin, and your bones to be less defined, such as the shape of your jaw.

Prevent other teeth from shifting

When there is space to fill, your teeth may begin to shift to fill in the space that is empty. This can lead to gaps throughout your set of teeth or can even cause teeth to become bent or angled creating an awkward smile.  This shifting can make speech patterns change as well as affect your eating.

Make sure that your bite stays aligned

After the teeth shifting above begins to occur, your natural bite may become off. This can be as minimal as a shift to a more pronounced over bite or can lead to severe bite changes that can be linked to eating difficulties as well as conditions that can cause pain, such as TMJ.

Give you a full smile

When you are missing teeth, you will notice gaps or shadows in your smile or may even find yourself naturally smiling less to cover up the holes.  A bridge will not only fill out your mouth to let you present your best smile but will also give you the confidence to do so.

Help keep your smile beautiful and maintain jaw and dental health be replacing missing sections of teeth with one of the bridge options mentioned above.  If you are interested in learning more about how a bridge can restore your smile or need to schedule an appointment, contact Dunn and Poff Family Aesthetic and Cosmetic Dentistry today

What are the other advantages of dental bridges?

It can improve your speech

The absence of one or more teeth can affect your speech. You may find yourself slurring or mumbling words. A dental bridge helps to fill in the gap left by missing teeth improving the clarity of speech.

They can boost your self-esteem

Tooth loss can affect the physical appearance of your face, and dental bridges can help manage your change in physical appearance. However, a missing tooth can do more than just put a damper on the beauty of your grin they can damage a person’s self-esteem. By using dental bridges to help restore their facial shape, people often get the emotional and psychological benefits that come with feeling good about their appearance.

They help Maintain oral health

Missing teeth can lead to the shifting of your remaining teeth, resulting in crooked smiles, and in some cases, that can lead to additional difficulty efficiently cleaning your teeth with brushing and flossing. Bridges effectively fill those gaps and prevent the neighboring teeth from shifting, ultimately helping to prevent additional problems maintaining your oral health.

About the Author: Dr. Justin Poff, DDS

Dr. Poff has been practicing dentistry since 2011. He received his dental degree from the University of Tennesse Health and Science Center. Dr. Poff is dedicated to excellence in dentistry and has committed to furthering his education to the topics of general dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, short-term orthodontics, and implant dentistry.

Dr. Justin Poff, DDS

Arkansas native Dr. Justin Poff, DDS, is a University of Tennessee dental graduate committed to providing outstanding services in general, cosmetic, orthodontic, and implant dentistry. He now practices in Nashville, where he relocated with his wife after graduation, and continues to pursue excellence in dental care. When not in the dental office, Dr. Poff indulges in outdoor activities like hiking, kayaking, and skiing and contributes his time to the local community through his involvement with Young Life in Williamson County.

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