A missing tooth or several missing teeth can leave an unsightly gap, disable the arch of your teeth, make it difficult to smile, chew food, or speak, and even negatively impact your self-esteem.
Dr. Padmaja Yalamanchili of Fairfax Family Dentist in Fairfax, Virginia, can install a bridge to restore your smile and give you a solid chewing surface while stabilizing your entire arch of teeth.
What is a bridge?
A bridge is a dental installation that literally bridges the gap left by one or more missing teeth. Bridges can be removable, meaning they can be popped in and out of your mouth at will, or fixed, meaning they are attached to the teeth on either side of the gap and bonded in place.
Dental bridges can be used to fill in for a single tooth or multiple teeth, with the installation held on by abutments on adjoining teeth and a replacement called a pontic filling the empty spot. The pontic is designed to look just like your other teeth, and color matched so you can smile with confidence.
With this type of restoration, the pontic keeps the teeth on either side of the gap spaced so they don’t drift into the gap and destabilize your arch further. Sometimes bridgework is known as a partial denture, especially if it is the removable type. One partial denture can also be used to replace several missing teeth that aren’t all in a row, but which are all in the same arch (top or bottom.)
Who is a good candidate for a bridge?
If you have lost a tooth due to decay, gum disease, a failed root canal, or a trauma, a dental bridge can help restore your smile swiftly and without a lot of invasive steps. It’s also a good option if you have a missing tooth or several missing teeth but don’t have enough jawbone to support a dental implant.
Dr. Padmaja Yalamanchili examines the gaps in your smile, and discusses all of your options with you. If you have healthy bone under the gap and haven’t developed severe gum disease, she might recommend a dental implant as a longer-lasting option.
This is because with bridgework, there is no tooth root to stimulate the bone of the jaw, so it slowly dissolves. Eventually, the abutment teeth will become loose, and if you lose those teeth, you’ll have to have your bridgwork redone to fill the new gaps as well.
Ready to have your smile restored? Schedule a consultation with Dr. Yalamanchili by calling 703-213-5313 or book an appointment online.