Your appearance is one reason. Another is that the gap left by a missing tooth can mean greater strain is put on the teeth at either side. A gap can also mean your “bite” is affected, because the teeth next to the space can lean into the gap and alter the way the upper and lower teeth bite together. This can then lead to food getting packed into the gap, which causes both decay and gum disease.

How are missing teeth replaced?

This depends on the number of teeth missing and on where they are in the mouth. The condition of the other teeth also affects the decision. There are two main ways to replace the missing teeth. The first is with a removable false tooth or teeth – a partial denture. The second is with a fixed bridge. A bridge is usually used where there are fewer teeth to replace, or when the missing teeth are only on one side of the mouth.

Can I have a bridge fitted straight after having a tooth removed?

In many people, it can take up to 6 months for the gums to heal properly after and extraction. This means that you may need to have a temporary denture for 6 months before the bridge is fitted.

Can I always have a bridge to replace missing teeth?

Bridges are only possible if you have enough strong teeth with good bone support. Your dentist will help you decide which is the best way of replacing missing teeth.

What are bridges made of?

Bridges usually made of porcelain bonded to precious metal. Sometimes, there are other non-precious metals used in the base for strength. There are also new bridges made entirely of a special type of strong porcelain.

What will a bridge cost?

Cost will vary according to the size and type of bridge you need. Always get a written estimate and treatment plan before beginning any dental treatment. Although a bridge may seem expensive it should last many years.

How do I look after my bridge?

You need to clean your bridge every day, to prevent problems such as bad breath and gum disease. You also have to clean under the false tooth every day. Your dentist or hygienist will show you how to use a bridge needle or special floss, as a normal toothbrush cannot reach.

Are there other methods for fixing false teeth?

There are other methods, such as using a combination of crowns and partial dentures that can keep the retaining clips out of sight. These are quite specialised dentures, so you should ask your dentist about them.

Can I have teeth which attach to the jawbone?

Yes. By having implants. The success of this technique means you may be able to replace missing teeth without crowning other teeth. See our leaflet “Tell me about Implants” for more details. Remember that it is as important to care for your remaining teeth as it is to replace the missing ones.

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Brenchley Dental

What our patients say…

Brenchley Dental

“The surgery is always welcoming, from the minute step into the surgery you are welcomed by very friendly reception staff. I have never been kept waiting long for my appointment they generally run on time but will inform you at reception if not. The dentist is very informative throughout the appointment and if treatment is needed will always explain the options you have and will give their advice. They are brilliant with my children. Brilliant service everytime I have visited.”

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