A bridge is one alternative to replace a missing tooth. It is basically two or more crowns joined together to form a "bridge" across the missing tooth.
The procedure requires two appointments. During the first visit, we will examine the health of your gums and other teeth to evaluate if you are a candidate for a dental bridge. If you are suitable, you are given a local anaesthetic so your dentist can prepare the teeth required to support the bridge. If the support teeth are decayed or badly broken down, your dentist may have to build them back up before they can be used as support teeth for a bridge.
Next, your dentist takes an impression of the prepared teeth with a silicon-putty material that is used to create a model of your teeth. Your bridge is fabricated based on this model by a skilled lab technician so that it precisely fits the prepared teeth. It is important that your restoration fit perfectly to avoid additional oral health problems such as tooth decay. While your bridge is being fabricated, your dentist fits you with a temporary bridge so the teeth and gums can be protected from damage until your permanent bridge is ready. To complete the dental bridge procedure, you must return to the dental office for a second visit to have the bridge fitted and cemented.
Aesthetically the results are excellent, and the entire procedure is completed in two weeks. The negatives of this procedure is that we are removing tooth structure in order to create room for the bridge to fit. The bridge is ideal if both the two supporting teeth (known as abutements) are structurally compromised and require crowns. If both adjacent teeth are healthy untouched teeth we recommend the dental implant instead. The average lifespan of the tooth is about 10-20 years under normal biting pressures. There are several type of bridges, including conventional, resin bonded, porcelain fused to metal, all metal, and cantilever bridges. Your dentist at Dental Essence will discuss with you in detail which cosmetic dental option is best suited for you.