Today we are discussing an interesting case where a patient presented at our clinic for help after experiencing much problems with a conventional bridge on natural teeth. The patient was a middle aged female. The bridge had been placed onto the natural teeth more than 20 years ago and since that time the patient had enjoyed the use of the fixed bridge.
Dental bridges are usually supported on natural teeth. Before a conventional bridge on natural teeth can be made the supporting teeth for the bridge need to be closely examined to ensure that they are strong enough and suitable for supporting the new bridge. The teeth are prepared under local anaesthetic during a 1 hour appointment. The supporting teeth are reduced in size in order to act as a suitable foundation for the fixed bridge.
Once the preparation is complete, an accurate impression is taken of the supporting teeth and these are sent to the dental laboratory in order for the bridge to be made. The bridge is completed when the dentist secures and cements the bridge onto the natural supporting teeth.
Once completed the bridge is fixed into position. At first it may feel awkward or strange as this will be a ‘foreign’ feeling in the mouth however after a few days/week the bridge will feel as normal as the other teeth. A fixed bridge is comfortable and when completed feels just like a natural tooth.
The disadvantage of fixed bridges on natural teeth is that they damage the natural teeth long term. The preparation of the bridge will require reduction of the natural teeth. This reduction removes the protective layer of enamel which normally protects the teeth. This layers of enamel is extremely hard and a dentist needs to use diamond cutting tools in order to reduce this. After the reduction of natural tooth, there is a great possibility that the tooth may suffer due to the trauma caused by drilling etc.
The effects of tooth preparation prior to crowning or bridge work may cause the teeth to become ‘dead’ or non vital in the long term. Once the teeth lose their vitality they will become more brittle and require root treatment or extraction. All in all , tooth preparation for crowns or bridge work is damaging and should be avoided at all costs if possible.
Enter dental implants !
This case shows a patient who has had a fixed bridge for many years and over time decay developed under the bridge. Ultimately the bridge work failed and the patient was faced with the 4 options
In this clinical case the patient had the problem bridge removed and dental implants placed. On the same day of the surgery a provisional bridge was made on the implants in order for the tissues and bone to adapt to the new positions of the new replacement teeth. Once the implants had healed, final impressions were taken for the final implant bridge.
Dental implants are strong and stimulate the adjacent bone. This means that in stead of bone receding after natural teeth are removed, dental implants actually stimulate the surrounding bone to grown. The dental implant bridge is comfortable and aesthetically fantastic.
The results look amazing. All dental implant surgery and photographs by expert Dr Federico Brunner. For more information please feel free to contact Dr. Brunner at www.hailshamdentalimplants.co.uk