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Dental Bridges: An Overview

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Dental & Oral Health related image Photo: Getty Images

A dental bridge is a false tooth. Unlike dentures that you can remove, dental bridges are permanently fixed to neigboring teeth. They are offered if you have lost a tooth or teeth due to an accident or decay.

If you don’t have a dental bridge, aside from the missing tooth affecting your appearance, it could also put extra strain on your remaining teeth and they may lean into the gap. Food and bacteria can accumulate there and cause further decay and gum disease. It can also affect your bite, so it’s importance to remedy the problem.

Types of Bridges

Fixed Bridge
This is the strongest and most popular type of bridge. It consists of a false tooth, called a pontic and is attached to two new crowns on either side of it.

Resin Bonded Bridge
This bridge doesn’t involve having any new crowns. The false tooth is made from plastic and it is attached by metal bonded with resin to the neighboring teeth.

Cantilever Bridge
This type of bridge is done if there is more than one tooth missing and there is only one tooth adjacent to where the bridge is needed. It is attached to only one tooth so it is not suitable for high impact areas.

How are Bridges Fitted?
Bridges are fitted in a two appointment schedule. During the first appointment you will be given a local anaesthetic and your adjacent teeth or tooth will be reduced in size to make room for the bridge. The dentist will then make an impression of your teeth so that the bridge can be made to your exact specifications. After this has been done, you will be given a temporary bridge to protect your teeth until your new bridge is ready.

During the second appointment the permanent bridge is cemented in place. The cement is only short-lasting (about two weeks). This is so you can make sure the bridge is comfortable and your bite is correct. If it doesn’t feel right it can be adjusted at subsequent appointments. Once you are sure that it is right for you, the dentist can attach it with permanent cement.


Dental Bridges, Just what are they? Ocean Dental. Web. 19 November 2011. http://www.odental.co.uk/restorative/dental-bridges

What is a Dental Bridge?

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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