A dental bridge, or pontic, is a cosmetic replacement secured by resin or cement for a lost or extracted tooth. This cement or resin is extremely firm, and removing it often requires a procedure called scaling. You can use a dental pick to remove cement from teeth. Solvents are generally not used as they can damage the resin of the bridge.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Things you need
- Dental pick
- Dental mirror
- Dental floss
Brush and floss the teeth thoroughly to remove any debris and plaque, and be sure to rinse well.
Locate the teeth to which the cement is still bonded using the dental mirror. Observe the amount of cement present, and ensure there are no cavities near the area. If you do find a cavity, contact your dentist. Picking at the cavity could break off enamel around the cavity and cause further damage.
Scrape slowly at the cement with the dental pick. Start at the thickest area of cement using a back and forth motion, and slowly whittle the cement down until you reach the surface of the tooth's enamel.
Brush, floss and rinse once you have removed the cement. Contact your dentist to make arrangements for replacing the bridge. The dentist will be able to use a dental drill to manually remove cement from the bridge without breaking it.
Tips and warnings
- Work slowly while applying medium pressure. Too much force risks scraping the actual tooth enamel when it is reached.
- Work in a well lit area.
- Rinse your mouth often rather than swallowing particles of cement.
- Do not make adjustments to the bridge itself at home. Take it to your dentist. Wearing an ill fitting bridge could damage or move the anchoring teeth.
- Picking at the cement on the bridge yourself will risk cracking or breaking it.
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