Dental bridges are a restorative dental treatment that provides multiple benefits to patients with one or more missing teeth. Bridges allow patients to chew and speak properly, prevent shifting teeth, maintain face shape, and restore an even bite. Bridges usually require healthy teeth or dental implants as anchors on either side of the missing tooth.
A fixed dental bridge consists of dental implants or natural teeth on either side of a tooth gap. If patients have natural teeth next to the empty socket, they can be protected with dental crowns. Implants or natural teeth covered with dental crowns often act as anchors to support a bridge.
Dr. Nishan Halim offers dental bridges to patients in Washington, DC. He collaborates with patients one-on-one to determine which restorative dental solutions work best for them. Dr. Halim can then refer you to a specialist if you require dental implants.
Types of Bridges
Removable Dental Bridge: Removable bridges often act as a temporary solution for missing teeth. Although removable dental bridges cost less than fixed dental bridges, they do not offer long-term benefits and do not support bone retention. These are also used when the span of missing teeth is very large, or your jawbone isn’t healthy enough to support dental implants. Since they’re cost-effective, they’re also an ideal option if you have a strict budget. Removable bridges typically last for about 5-8 years.
Fixed Dental Bridge: A fixed dental bridge consists of one or more prosthetic teeth supported by dental crowns or implants on either side of the missing tooth gap. Natural adjacent teeth or implants are needed to ensure a solid foundation for the dental bridge. While this option costs more, it lasts longer than a removable dental bridge — particularly if it’s supported by dental implants.
Dental Bridge Treatment
Before any treatment, Dr. Halim will meet with you to determine the best treatment plan for you. We create a personalized treatment plan that’s designed to meet your unique dental needs. Dr. Halim will talk to you about your dental goals, medical history, and budget. We want to make sure you’re getting the perfect dental restoration for your needs.
For a removable bridge, impressions are taken of your mouth so that the bridge can be custom-made in a dental laboratory. It takes a period of time for the bridge to be made. When it’s ready, you’ll come back into the office to have it fitted. If there are any small adjustments that need to be made, we can make them then.
A fixed dental bridge is a longer process. If you’re using your natural teeth as anchor teeth, tooth structure is removed and dental crowns are fitted. Without dental crowns, the bridge puts excessive stress and strain on your natural teeth. They’re more likely to become damaged, wear prematurely, and be susceptible to tooth decay. Dental crowns allow the restoration to be supported well and not damage your natural teeth.
If you’re using dental implants, the implant surgery will take place first. Implant posts are surgically placed in the jawbone. They take around 3-6 months to fully heal and fuse with your jawbone. We’ll fit you with a temporary bridge while this process is taking place. When they’re healed, they’ll be topped with pieces called abutments, and a custom dental bridge is made to connect to these abutments. The restoration is color-matched and shaped to blend in well with the rest of your smile.
Getting A Dental Bridge in Washington DC
Do you have one or more missing teeth and believe you can benefit from a dental bridge? We’re ready to help. Call us or schedule an appointment online to get started.