The process of having a dental bridge put in is pretty painless. Your dentist will administer a local anesthetic to prevent any discomfort associated with filing down your teeth or adhering crowns to the teeth on either side of the bridge. Once the anesthetic wears off and you go home, however, you may start to wonder if certain feelings you are having are normal or if something is wrong. Here's a look at some common feelings patients have after dental bridge work -- and what each may mean:
Do you have a little pain when you drink something hot or cold or when you bite down on something hard? This sensitivity is quite normal following a bridge. The teeth on either side of the bridge were disturbed a bit when your dentist worked on them, so the nerve endings may be super-sensitive right now. Just avoid hot and cold foods for a few days, and the sensitivity should subside on its own. You can use a sensitivity toothpaste to accelerate this process.
If the pain is more than a little sensitivity and is keeping you from being able to sleep, talk, or eat, then it's time to call the dentist. There is a chance the cement did not adhere properly and the bridge or crowns are "poking you" in the mouth somewhere. There's also a chance that your dentist took too much enamel off the neighboring teeth, resulting in greater sensitivity. Both of these issues can be fixed, but you need to notify your dentist.
A Rough Feeling
The bridge should feel pretty smooth against your tongue, but you may notice an area or two where there's a hint of roughness. Sometimes this happens when the dental cement is not completely filed off around the edge of the bridge. This is not a serious issue. Give it a few days; the exposed cement may wear away naturally. If the area still feels rough after a few days, or if the roughness is enough to cause an abrasion on your tongue, contact your dentist.
Do you feel like there is extra pressure on the teeth next to the bridge? That's because there is. The bridge is being supported by the teeth on either side of it -- especially when you chew. Rest assured that in time, your teeth will get used to this increased pressure and you won't constantly notice it.
Contact a dental office like Scott W. Murphy, D.M.D., P.A. for more information and assistance.