Bridges are a prosthetic appliance that is used to replace missing teeth. Unlike dentures that are removable and which you can take out and put back on yourself, bridges can only be taken out by a dentist. They are made up of a false tooth called pontil with anchoring teeth on either side. These anchoring teeth are called abutment which provides support and is latched onto the teeth on either side of the missing tooth.
Technically, anyone who has a missing tooth is a good candidate for this procedure. Bridges can bring you several benefits, including:
- An improved smile with a complete set of teeth
- Better ability to speak and chew your food
- A more even bite thanks to the balance of having all your teeth in place
- An evener jawline and facial shape
- Prevention of other teeth from being misaligned or leaning out of position
There are also three types of bridges that you might want to learn about before discussing this procedure with one of our dentists:
The most common type used on patients. These bridges are made from the pontic (false tooth) that is flanked by crowns on either side and is usually made of porcelain or ceramic.
When the pontic only has an anchor tooth on one side instead of two. This is used when the missing tooth or gap only has one tooth beside it. However, it is not a recommended choice since having only one support can put too much pressure on that anchoring tooth.
Maryland bonded bridge
A false tooth with “metal wings” on the sides instead of crowns or abutments. These wings are attached to the existing teeth on either side of the gap.
How are bridges applied?
The first step would be to prepare the abutment teeth. This means our dentist will slightly recontour the teeth on either side of the gap so that a small portion of the enamel is removed to make room for the crown. A model of your teeth will then be made to be used as a model for the bridges. While it is being custom-made in the lab, our dentist will give you a temporary bridge to protect the exposed abutments and gap.
The actual bridge is fitted during your second visit and the fit of the new one may be adjusted over several appointments.
If you think that you may benefit from dental bridges, then give us a call today and book your consultation!