A dental bridge is one method to fill a space created by a missing tooth (or teeth). A dental bridge is made up of 2-3 or more dental crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap and a replacement in between. The dental bridge type you choose will depend on the condition of your smile, your cost goals, and the cosmetic results you desire. Whether you are looking for a temporary or permanent tooth loss solution, there is a dental bridge ideally suited for your needs. There are basically 3 types of dental bridges, those traditional bridges, cantilever bridges and Maryland bonded bridges
- Traditional bridges involve creating a crown for the tooth or implant on either side of the missing tooth, with a pontic in between. Traditional bridges are the most common type of bridge and are made of either porcelain fused to metal or ceramics.
- Cantilever bridges are used when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth.
- Maryland bonded bridges (also called a resin-bonded bridge or a Maryland bridge) are made of plastic teeth and gums supported by a metal framework. Metal wings on each side of the bridge are bonded to your existing teeth.
The Dental Bridge procedure
During the first visits, the abutment teeth are prepared. Preparation involves recontouring these teeth by removing a portion of enamel to allow room for a crown to be placed over them. Next, impressions of your teeth are made, which serve as a model from which the bridge, pontic, and crowns will be made by a dental laboratory. Your dentist will make a temporary bridge for you to wear to protect the exposed teeth and gums while your bridge is being made.
During the following visits, and the new permanent bridge will be checked and adjusted to achieve a proper fit. Multiple visits may be required to check the fit of the bridge framework and bite and this is dependent on each individual's case. Once the permanent bridge is fitting perfectly, it will be permanently cemented into place.