Dental Bridges in Phoenix, AZ

When a missing tooth creates a gap in your smile it can make everyday life more challenging. Eating can become difficult and many find it embarrassing to smile when an empty space is evident for all to see. Thankfully, with either implants or dental bridges you don’t have to live with missing teeth.

What Is A Dental Bridge?

A dental bridge is the most traditional way to replace a missing tooth. It can be a great option when:

The teeth surrounding the gap may need work in the future or have large fillings.
The tooth has been missing for a long time, which has led to bone loss and created a less-than-ideal environment for an implant.

medical diagram of dental bridges

How Long Do Dental Bridges Last?

With good oral hygiene and regular visits to the dentist for professional cleanings and exams, a dental bridge can last up to 15 years. The main reason that crowns and bridges eventually need replacing is due to cavities and decay. So, the better care you take of them the longer they’ll last.

How Do I Care For My Dental Bridge?

Maintaining a consistent and effective oral hygiene routine is the best way to keep your bridge in optimum shape. Choosing a healthy diet is also beneficial not only for the care of your bridges or crowns, but for your entire mouth. Avoid chewing on hard foods or substances like ice as they can damage crowns and bridges just as they can your natural teeth.

If you feel your smile could benefit from a dental bridge, call us today to schedule an appointment at 602.957.9643.

Dental Bridge FAQs in Phoenix

What Happens During My Appointment to Get a Dental Bridge?

Getting a dental bridge takes at least two appointments. Dr. Pappas will discuss what you can expect at the time of your consultation to repair or replace a badly damaged or missing tooth. If you have a severely damaged tooth that cannot be saved, the first step in treatment may be to extract the tooth. A traditional dental bridge has two crowns and a pontic (artificial tooth). The crowns and pontic are modeled to replicate your natural teeth. To achieve the optimal shape and fit, we'll take impressions of the area early in your treatment plan. Once you're ready for a dental bridge, the next step is to reduce the teeth that will receive dental crowns and serve as anchors for your artificial tooth. It takes about two weeks from the time Dr. Pappas prepares your teeth for the bridge for the final restoration to be ready. In the interim, the reduced teeth are protected by temporary crowns. At your final visit, this full bridge replaces the temporary restoration, and your natural-looking smile is once again intact!

How Long Will it Take to Get Used to My Dental Bridge?

As durable and precise as your new dental bridge is, it probably won't feel like your natural teeth right away. You may feel slightly sore or tender for a few days. Your teeth may be more sensitive to hot and cold temperatures than they were before your procedure. These normal side effects of dental bridge treatment should resolve within the first week after your last appointment. While you're recovering from the procedure itself, it can be beneficial to avoid anything that could irritate the area. Examples include hard foods, crunchy foods, and items that are hot or spicy.

Because your dental bridge contains two crowns and an artificial tooth, it can take some time to adjust. Your new teeth may feel odd to your tongue and cheeks. You may be more prone to accidentally biting these soft tissues, so take your time to eat slowly at first. Although your bridge may feel odd for up to two weeks, it should not feel loose and it should not be painful to chew. If you notice either of these things, contact the office so we can arrange an appointment to check it for proper fit and shape.

Can I Eat Normally with a Dental Bridge?

You can expect to resume most if not all of your normal habits once you get used to your new restoration. For the most part, you can use your dental bridge exactly as you do your natural teeth, with the exception of biting on hard foods or objects. You can enjoy most foods, including bagels, steaks, and chips. However, foods like hard nuts and objects like ice or pen caps should be strictly avoided. Biting or chewing these items can degrade or even damage your bridge, requiring the restoration to be replaced sooner than it would need to be otherwise.

Is Getting a Dental Bridge Painful?

Before your dental bridge procedure, you will be given a local anesthetic so you do not feel any kind of pain or discomfort. However, you may experience some discomfort once the procedure is complete. Your dentist can prescribe over-the-counter pain medications to help alleviate any pain and discomfort you feel.

How Much Does a Dental Bridge Cost?

The cost of a dental bridge varies from patient to patient. There are a few factors that determine the final price. 

These factors include the following:

  • The type of bridge being installed
  • The materials used to create the bridge
  • The location of your dentist
  • The rates of your dentist

On average, you can spend somewhere between a few hundred dollars and several thousand dollars, depending on the situation. You will need to consult Dr. Pappas for a more accurate estimate. 

Who Are Ideal Candidates For Dental Bridges?

People who are missing one or multiple teeth are good candidates for dental bridges. You are an ideal candidate if you have realistic expectations regarding the outcome of the procedure and have good overall oral health. You must also be willing to schedule and attend routine follow-up appointments to monitor your dental bridges. 

Will Dental Bridges Look Natural?

Dental technology is not what it used to be back in the day. These days, modern dental bridges are designed to resemble and function like natural teeth. You will work with Dr. Pappas to choose the perfect size, shape, and shade of your bridges so they can blend in seamlessly with your natural teeth.

Are There Any Risks to Getting Dental Bridges?

Although having dental bridges installed is a typically safe dental procedure, there are a few risks patients need to be aware of. 

These risks include the following:

  • Sustaining damage to the surrounding teeth
  • Gum disease
  • Dislodgement of the bridge
  • Tooth decay
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Infection

In very rare cases, dental bridges can potentially impact your speech, namely during the adjustment period. However, most people who have dental bridges adapt to them relatively quickly and can speak as they normally would. 

Is It Possible to Get Dental Bridges With an Ongoing Oral Health Issue?

In most cases, it is recommended to take care of any and all underlying oral health issues before getting dental bridges. The reason for this is that getting them with gum disease or tooth decay can increase the risk of complications. It is, however, possible to get a dental bridge while having an oral health problem, but you will need to consult with Dr. Pappas for more information. 

How Long Does it Take to Get a Dental Bridge?

Patients can expect to have their dental bridges within two to three dental visits. The first visit usually involves preparing your natural teeth, getting tooth impressions, and having a temporary bridge installed. Once the permanent bridge is finished, it will be installed during your next appointment. The whole process of getting a dental bridge can take around two to four weeks.

Schedule A Dental Bridge Consultation in Phoenix

If you're missing teeth, a dental bridge could be right for you. To determine candidacy, please contact our experienced dentist today by calling 602.957.9643 or by filling out our online contact formDr. Pappas and his team proudly serve Phoenix, AZ, and surrounding communities.

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