• Your remaining teeth can start migrating to fill the gap. That puts them out of proper alignment, which can badly affect your bite. • Teeth out of alignment will wear more quickly. • A gap left long enough will cause the nearby bone to deteriorate, because that missing tooth root keeps the bone together and strong. • A shrinking jawbone will change the shape of your face and give you a more aged look. • A gap left long enough can cause the teeth to lean and can sometimes lead to potential TMJ problems.
What is a bridge?
Bridges are false teeth suspended between two other teeth which are crowned for the purpose. There are three kinds:
• Traditional bridges – consisting of the artificial tooth attached to a crown on each side. The neighboring teeth must be given these crowns, whether they need them or not, to provide support for the artificial tooth. • Maryland bonded bridges – also called a resin bonded bridge, consisting of a metal framework with "wings" that are bonded to the adjacent teeth. Because less preparation is needed for the abutting teeth, these bridges are less expensive than traditional bridges but are not as strong. • Cantilever bridges – utilized when there are teeth on only one side of the space to be filled with a bridge.
Bridges are not removable like dentures and with proper care, can last up to ten years or longer.
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Laura Matin, DDS
Address: 14740 NW Cornell Road, Suite 120 Portland, OR 97229