A gap in a smile can mean serious problems, and not just cosmetic ones. If a gap forms as a result of tooth loss, the remaining teeth may see a decline in health. Thus, it is vital that gaps be filled, and filling a gap means the placement of a dental bridge. Below, your Erlangerdentist, Dr. Darlene Henry, discusses the many problems that can stem from missing teeth as well as what patients can expect from the placement of a dental bridge.

Why Gaps Are Such a Problem

When teeth are aligned properly, they function like a fence, protecting each other and the gums. However, when a gap develops because of tooth loss, the fence is no longer as effective, and tooth decay and gum disease are more likely. In addition to a higher risk of tooth decay and gum disease, gaps can also cause teeth to shift and become misaligned. As teeth shift out of alignment, the risk of developing a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder also increases. Highly painful with symptoms of frequent headaches, earaches, migraines and facial pain, TMJ disorders can make life very miserable. Who knew a gap could cause so many problems?

Dental Bridges

Dental bridges are made up of prosthetic teeth attached to dental crowns. The crowns are placed over the top of the teeth on either edge of the gap called abutment teeth, which provide the necessary stability to hold the bridge in place. In order to place a dental bridge, your Erlanger dentist, Dr. Henry, first shapes the abutment teeth for the crowns and takes an impression of them. She then sends the impression to a dental lab, which creates the bridge. Once the bridge is complete, she attaches it with dental cement.

Schedule a Visit with Your Erlanger Dentist

Has tooth loss formed a gap in your smile? A dental bridge can close the gap. Contact our 41018 dentist office at 859-344-8500 to schedule an appointment with your Erlanger dentist, Dr. Henry. We serve patients from Erlanger, Cincinnati, Crestview Hills, Fort Mitchell, Florence, Union, Independence, and Taylor Mill.