The Treatment Process
A dental bridge is made up of one or more prosthetic teeth (called pontics), which are supported by two dental crowns. These crowns are placed over healthy remaining teeth, while the pontics address the gaps in your smile left behind by missing teeth. Implant-supported bridges do not rely on nearby teeth but on posts that are embedded into the jawbone.
The exact details of your treatment will depend on whether you are receiving a traditional bridge or an implant-supported restoration. The processes are relatively similar, except that implant-supported bridges require implant surgery prior to your final restoration.
If you choose an implant-supported bridge, we will use an advanced 3-D cone beam scanner to assess the health of your jawbone and to precisely plan the placement of your dental implants. We will create an incision in your gums during implant surgery, access your jawbone, and place your implant posts. We will then apply sutures and, in most cases, send you home with a temporary restoration to begin your recovery. Whether you choose a traditional or implant-supported bridge, treatment can have life-changing results.
If you are receiving an implant-supported bridge, you will come back to our office four to six months later to receive impressions for your final restoration.
If you choose a traditional bridge, this process can be started on the day of your initial appointment. We will modify the supporting teeth and take impressions of your smile, which will be used to design a bridge that fits, feels, and looks natural in your smile. You will be provided with temporary restorations until your next visit.
Your impressions will be sent to our partner lab, where skilled technicians will create your custom bridge using high-quality materials over two weeks or so.
When your bridge is ready, you will come back to our office. If you received dental implants, we would attach your bridge to your anchoring abutments. If you opted for a traditional bridge, we would use dental cement to secure your restoration in place.
Traditional Dental Bridges vs. Implant-Supported Bridges
While conventional dental bridges are a trusted solution, implant-supported bridges are widely considered the gold standard for tooth replacement. Implant-supported restorations offer several benefits over traditional prosthetics, including:
- No reshaping of healthy teeth: Because implant-supported bridges are held in place by implants, your dentist will not need to reshape healthy adjacent teeth to create room for the supporting dental crowns.
- Added jawbone support: When you lose teeth, your jawbone also loses its source of stimulation and can begin to deteriorate. Dental implants provide regenerative signals to your jawbone everytime you chew and eat, keeping it structurally strong.
If you are worried about financing implant treatment, we offer flexible financing options, including LendingClub® and CareCredit®.
Do not let Missing Teeth Affect Your Life
Whether you choose a traditional or implant-supported bridge, treatment can have life-changing results. We have helped many patients achieve confidence in their smile once again and can help you too. To schedule a consultation at Mountain View Dental & Orthodontics, message us online or call us at (575) 437-7900.