A bridge is a dental prosthetic that fills the empty space created by a missing tooth. A crown is placed on the teeth on each end of the gap to support the prosthetic tooth, or pontic, which takes the place of the missing tooth.
Dental bridges are effective at replacing a missing tooth in a natural-looking way, as well as stopping adjacent teeth from shifting. Further, the bridge redistributes the force of a bite, supports the structure of one’s facial features, and facilitates proper chewing and speaking.
There are three main types of dental bridges. These include:
• Cantilever bridges- For gaps that have only one tooth adjacent to support the bridge, a cantilever bridge can be a good option for filling the gap.
• Resin-bonded bridges – Also known as a Maryland bridge, these bridges may use either porcelain or metal wings. These wings are placed on the side of the teeth which face the tongue. Wings frame the gap and support replacement teeth. Resin-bonded bridges may use porcelain, metal, or plastic.
• Traditional bridges – Traditional bridges, the most commonly used method, involves the use of two crowns which are placed on teeth on both sides of a gap, with the prosthetic tooth (pontic) in between. Either ceramics or a fusion of metal and porcelain may be used for traditional bridges.
Dental bridges are placed over several visits. During your first appointment, enamel is removed from the abutment teeth to prepare the dental crown for placement. Then, impressions of the teeth are made allowing the lab to customize the fit of your dental bridge, pontic, and crowns. A custom fit ensures optimal comfort and proper function. After your first appointment, a temporary bridge is placed to protect your and teeth until your custom bridge is ready to be placed.
On your second visit, the temporary bridge is removed and the final bridge is fitted and adjusted. When at least two weeks have passed, the final bridge is cemented in place.
The total cost of a dental bridge depends on the materials used, the number of visits required, and other factors. In most cases, dental insurance pays a portion of the cost, and with the right care, they can last 10 years or more. If you are missing a single tooth, several teeth, or a full set of teeth, Advanced Dentistry can help. We offer numerous options, including dental bridges, to help you regain the brilliant smile you once had or improve a smile that you’re not satisfied with. Contact our office today to schedule your initial consultation with us to get the smile you’ve always wanted.