What is a dental bridge?
When a tooth is missing and an implant cannot be placed, a dental bridge is used to maintain the space and restore full chewing function.
How does a bridge work?
A dental bridge attaches an artificial tooth to the adjacent natural teeth (abutment teeth). This is accomplished by placing crowns on the abutment teeth and attaching the artificial tooth to fill the space.
What are the pros and cons of a dental bridge?
- Bridges can be made in two visits, giving you a short turn around if you just lost your tooth
- They look natural
- It does not have to be taken out like a removable partial denture
- The neighboring teeth may need to be altered to provide stability for the bridge
- The teeth are connected; therefore if only one tooth has a problem, the entire bridge may need to be replaced
- Oral hygiene is more challenging due to it being difficult to floss under a bridge
What if I don’t do anything to replace the missing tooth?
When a tooth is missing, doing nothing is always an option. However, your dental health is the most important reason to replace it. Teeth were designed to complement each other. Increased risk of gum disease has proven to be one of the worst side effects of missing teeth and can be minimized with a bridge. The teeth surrounding the missing tooth can begin to drift over time and could result in the need for more dental work.