Dental Crowns & Bridges in Ephrata
It’s essential that patients replace missing teeth no matter the number or location. Patients who lose back teeth can be tempted to forego tooth replacement, but even a single lost tooth can be detrimental to patients’ oral health. Oral health hazards associated with tooth loss include the following:
- Dental drift – teeth that shift to fill the gap left by lost teeth
- Misalignment – when dental drift changes the way teeth fit together
- TMJ dysfunction – when patients’ bites are out of alignment, excess pressure can be placed on the temporomandibular joints (TMJ) that connect the jaw to the skull leading to pain and limited jaw mobility
- Dental damage and wear – because pressure from chewing speaking and other daily tasks is placed unevenly on teeth to accommodate the lost dental structure, patients are at increased risk for dental chips, cracks, and breaks
- Additional tooth loss – as teeth shift to fill the gap in patients’ smiles, healthy gum and jawbone tissue is lost due to lack of stimulation causing the face to sink in or wrinkle, and as the supportive tissue breaks down, patients may experience additional tooth loss
We offer gold, porcelain bonded to metal, zirconia, and all-ceramic restorations in our Ephrata, PA dental practice.
That’s why it’s so important for patients to work with the team at Ephrata Family Dentistry to create a tooth replacement plan as soon as their tooth is lost. Contact our team immediately if you experience a knocked out tooth, and we’ll schedule an emergency tooth replacement consultation to start you down the path to restoring oral health right away. If we determine that fixed bridge tooth replacement is the best solution to restore your smile, we then need to determine the best material for your bridge. We offer gold, porcelain bonded to metal, zirconia, and all-ceramic restorations in our Ephrata, PA dental practice.
Crown and Bridge Tooth Replacement
One of the most natural looking and feeling tooth replacement solutions we offer is a crown supported fixed bridge. Bridges are crafted by connecting a series of dental crowns to each other. The crowns on either end are then attached to healthy teeth to support the replacement tooth or teeth, called pontics, in the middle. These prosthetic teeth create a bridge from one healthy tooth to the next. Thus, the prosthetic is commonly referred to as a bridge. Crowns and bridges allow our team to replace between one and three consecutive missing teeth.
The Crown & Bridge Process at Ephrata Family Dentistry
The first step to restoring your smile with a fixed bridge is to capture a number of x-ray images of your supportive structures. These x-rays along with visual assessments tell us whether your surrounding teeth are healthy enough to support a bridge. Then, we remove a small amount of enamel from the surrounding teeth that will support the fixed bridge prosthetic so the crowns placed over top will blend seamlessly into the smile line. Next, we capture impressions of the prepared bite that are used by skilled professionals in our dental lab to craft the prosthetic to fit perfectly within your smile and against opposing teeth. Before you leave our office, we’ll place a temporary bridge to protect the prepared teeth as your custom prosthetic is made in the lab. Once we receive the custom restoration, patients return to exchange their temporary for the final crown and bridge tooth replacement. For the most part, patients are able to resume their regular at home care routine, but they will need to use floss threaders to clean between the bridge tooth and gums.