Dental Bridge

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About Dental Bridges

Bridge Procedure

A dental bridge is a prosthesis which is used to replace a missing tooth or teeth. A dental bridge is similar to a crown, but consists of at least 2 or 3 teeth, while a crown covers a single tooth. The bridge is cemented over the top of the teeth either side of a gap, so that the pontic (the prosthetic tooth in the middle) is held in place.

Recommended for

  • Closing the gap between teeth

Before the Dental bridge Procedure

In order to prepare for a dental bridge, the teeth either side of the gap are reduced in size so that the bridge can be placed over the top, like a cap.

During the Procedure

At the first appointment, the teeth will be prepared, and an impression is taken so that the final bridge can be created in the laboratory. The dentist may create a temporary bridge to wear while the final bridge is being produced. Once the final bridge has been made, it is fitted and cemented into place.

Materials

Bridges are available in a range of materials, but are most commonly rendered from porcelain fused to metal (PFM). These are mostly tooth-colored, but offer the added strength of a metal base. As the metal can sometimes be visible, some people prefer full porcelain or zirconia, especially for front teeth.

Anesthesia

Local anesthetic (usually).

Procedure duration

The Dental Bridge takes 2 to 3 hours.

Usually 2 appointments are required. At the first appointment, the dentist will prepare the teeth and take a mould. The bridge will be custom-made in a laboratory (patients should ask how long this will take). At the next appointment the bridge will be cemented into place.

After the Procedure

Post procedure care

Patients should avoid eating on the bridge straight away. Certain foods, such as hard or chewy sweets, should be avoided as the bridge could become loose.

Possible discomfort

Patients may suffer with tooth sensitivity when exposed to very hot or cold food or drinks following the procedure. Patients may also experience a dull ache after the bridge has been fitted. Both symptoms should subside after a few weeks.

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