Our general and cosmetic dentist, Dr. Kevin Boulard, can make dental bridges for your upper and lower teeth. He also can make adjustments or dental bridge repairs when needed at Something To Smile About in Merrimack, NH. A dental bridge, also known as a partial denture, can offer your teeth the support they need to stay healthy and in place.
When one or several of your teeth are missing, you have more than just a cosmetic dental problem. Dr. Boulard can place a fixed dental bridge for you to maintain your oral health. The main job of a dental bridge is to suspend a fake tooth (or pontic) where the missing tooth left a space. Existing teeth on either side of the missing tooth (or teeth) can hold the pontic in place. A custom bridge reestablishes the appearance and health of your smile with high-quality materials. If you have missing teeth or need to have a tooth extracted, schedule an appointment with Dr. Boulard to learn more about your restoration options with a dental bridge.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF DENTAL BRIDGES?
Something To Smile About is proud to use top tools and materials to create beautiful and long-lasting bridges. Other benefits of dental bridges include:
- Improved appearance: A well-made dental bridge can restore your smile and give you back your confidence.
- Improved oral health: Dental bridges keep your teeth in alignment and improve your bite. They also make it easier to clean your teeth and gums to prevent gum disease.
- Durability: With proper care, a dental bridge can last for many years.
- Convenient: Unlike temporary dentures, dental bridges do not need to be removed and can be brushed and flossed like your natural teeth.
WHO NEEDS A DENTAL BRIDGE?
Missing teeth are not just a cosmetic problem. Spaces between the teeth may have a powerful impact on the health of your mouth. The fact is your mouth is carefully balanced, and a missing tooth may affect its function. Over time, gaps can lead to teeth shifting, creating bite problems (underbite, crossbite, overbite) and atrophy of the gums and jawbone. To place a bridge, the surrounding teeth must be strong enough to support the restoration, including sufficient density in the jawbone and gums. Dr. Boulard will assess your mouth at your consultation to help you decide the best type of bridge (cantilever, traditional, Maryland bonded, or resin bonded) and material (porcelain, ceramic, metal, and porcelain fused to metal).
We offer dental bridges to patients who already have a missing tooth or teeth and patients seeking treatment for a dental crisis that results in the placement of a dental bridge. Extractions may need to be included in the treatment plan.
DR. BOULARD’S DENTAL BRIDGE TECHNIQUE
Tooth replacement with a dental bridge begins with preparing the tooth for digital imaging and impressions. Dr. Boulard will also be making your temporary bridge from the same images. You will be numb for the crown preparation process, and Dr. Boulard will help with any anxiety. He may also offer nitrous oxide sedation, so you do not have to worry about dental fears. Once your teeth are prepared for the placement of a temporary bridge, Dr. Boulard will take digital x-rays and impressions of your teeth for your bridge to be created. He will also match the color of your teeth to have a bridge made in your natural shade.
A temporary resin bridge will be placed while your custom one is being made. This may take a few weeks. Once your bridge is ready, your will return for a follow-up appointment to place your fixed dental bridge.
At your dental bridge placement appointment, we will remove your temporary bridge and set your new, high-quality bridge in place. Dr. Boulard will carefully adjust the position of your bridge so it feels right and stable.
HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR DENTAL BRIDGE
You should notice an improvement in the appearance and function of your teeth once your bridge is in place. You may schedule a second appointment at Something To Smile About to alter the fit of your bridge if it feels uncomfortable in the first few weeks after placement. Dr. Boulard or a member of his team will show you how to care for your bridge, including the best way to clean it.
Dental bridge cleaning is important to your oral health because decay can still develop under the bridge. If you properly care for it, your bridge can stay in place for several years. You need to schedule appointments at Something To Smile About for regular dental exams and biannual cleanings. In your examination, Dr. Boulard can evaluate your dental bridge to determine if it needs to be replaced or repaired.
DENTAL BRIDGES FAQ
How many teeth can be replaced with a dental bridge?
Most dental bridges are made to replace between one to four teeth. Replacing more than four teeth can make a dental bridge less stable. In these cases, dental implants or a full denture may be a better option During your consultation with Dr. Boulard, he will examine your teeth and help you decide what is the best option to rebuild your smile.
How long does a dental bridge typically last?
If you take proper care of your bridge, practice good oral hygiene, and get regular dental checkups, dental bridges can usually last between 7 – 15 years or longer for some patients. Because our teeth can shift and change as we age, regular checkups at Something To Smile About in Merrimack, NH, are necessary to make adjustments to your dental bridge.
How long is the process to make a dental bridge?
Most dental bridges can be made and placed in two appointments. Dr. Boulard will use digital imaging and impressions of your mouth to custom make your dental bridge, which can take up to three weeks. The teeth that hold the bridge in place will be prepared during the first appointment, after which you will receive a temporary bridge while your permanent bridge is made. When you come back for the second appointment, your permanent bridge will be placed.
Does dental insurance cover dental bridges?
Many dental insurance plans will cover at least part of the cost of a dental bridge. During your consultation, Dr. Boulard and his staff can help you consult with your insurance provider to estimate your out-of-pocket costs and final cost for your dental bridge.
LET’S CROSS THIS BRIDGE TOGETHER
Even if you don’t mind how you look with a gap from a missing tooth, it may lead to bigger problems if you don’t get it fixed. Make a consultation with Dr. Boulard to get more information about dental bridge restoration. Something To Smile About offers custom dental restorations that can help improve the health and appearance of your mouth. Contact our front office in Merrimack, NH to schedule your appointment.