A missing tooth can set off a chain reaction in your mouth. The bone that once supported your tooth will begin to deteriorate, causing neighboring teeth to shift and move. Newly exposed gums and teeth will be more susceptible to plaque, increasing the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Chapel Hill dentists Dr. James Furgurson and Dr. Nathan White can help you avoid these problems by replacing missing teeth quickly. One solution for missing teeth is a dental bridge.
Dental Bridges vs. Dental Implants
Your dentist uses a dental bridge to replace one or several missing teeth. An anchor on either side of the gap supports the bridgework to hold the false tooth in place. We can attach attach a bridge three different ways: with natural teeth, dental implants, or a combination of the two. When you use the natural teeth to support the bridgework, we will place a dental crown to provide additional stability.
As dental implants have become more advanced, we often recommend them for replacing a single lost or missing tooth; or to secure a dental bridge. Dental implants offer the most stable, natural functioning, and lasting treatment option for most patients. Our dentists are highly trained in implant dentistry, and work with patients on an individual basis to address missing teeth with the most suitable result.
About our Dental Bridge Procedure
Dr. Furgurson will design a treatment plan that is specific to your needs and goals. Our process begins with a comprehensive evaluation to examine the health of the teeth, gums, jaw joints, and other support structures. You may have an existing dental bridge or have teeth that need to be extracted.
A dental bridge can either be removable or fixed. In most cases, Dr. Furgurson and Dr. White will support the choice for a fixed dental bridge as a long-term solution for missing teeth. We can support the dental bridge by either dental crowns and/or dental implants. The dentist will prepare the teeth to ensure a solid foundation for the dental bridge.
Then, the dental laboratory will create the bridge to our specifications. You may get a temporary bridge to wear in the meantime. In approximately 2 to 3 weeks from your initial visit, you will return to our Chapel Hill dental office for the delivery of the final restoration.
Dental Bridges FAQs
How much does a dental bridge cost?
The cost of a dental bridge will depend on the number and location of the missing teeth as well as the type of bridge and materials chosen. Chapel Hill Family & Cosmetic Dentistry works with nearly all dental insurance providers and will handle all necessary billing and paperwork. Additionally, we offer financing through CareCredit for patients who are concerned about cost.
Do you repair broken bridgework?
Although we build dental bridges to last a long time, problems can still arise. If you have a dental bridge that has chipped, broken, or come loose, you should contact our Chapel Hill dentist office right away. Depending on the extent of damage, we may be able to cement the bridge or replace it altogether.
How do I care for a dental bridge?
A dental bridge should be brushed and flossed just like natural teeth. We will show you a special technique to floss under and around artificial tooth or teeth. It is also important to visit our Chapel Hill dentist office at least twice a year for routine examinations.
How long does it take for a dental bridge to feel normal?
It may take as long as a month for patients to fully adjust to their new bridge. During this period we recommend that you avoid foods that are too hot or too cold.
What to expect after getting a dental bridge?
After getting a bridge, it’s best to eat and drink things at room temperature. Avoid eating foods that are particularly hard or crunchy as they may cause pain while wearing your bridge. We recommend sticking to a soft diet to reduce the applied pressure to your bridge. Once you feel comfortable you may resume your regular eating and drinking habits.
Can food get under a dental bridge?
Food can get caught under or around a bridge because there is a gap under the prosthetic tooth. We recommend regular dental exams to ensure that your dental bridge is in place and your surrounding teeth are healthy.
Schedule a Restorative Consultation
Chapel Hill Cosmetic and Family Dentistry is your all-inclusive dentistry in Durham, Chapel Hill, and surrounding counties. We specialize in providing long-term solutions for missing and lost teeth. Call your restorative dentist, Dr. Furgurson, at 919.736.6175 or request a consultation online today.