Bridges restore missing teeth with a natural looking, custom-made replacement. Teeth either side of the missing teeth are used as anchors with false porcelain teeth permanently fixed to them.
What are the benefits
Although a bridge may seem costly they can be a wise investment that will give many years of good service. Unlike dental implants, bridges can also replace missing teeth without the need for surgery – creating a new tooth that is almost indistinguishable from the natural teeth that surround it.
A bridge is made bespoke with considerable skill, vastly improving your appearance and bite. Having this bridge can help boost confidence in your smile and make daily activities, such as talking and eating, much easier. Replacing a missing tooth can also help protect remaining teeth.
What to expect
Following treatment, there can be slight soreness in your gums and increased sensitivity to changes in temperature from hot or cold foods. It can also feel strange to have a new tooth where there was none previously. These issues usually pass within a few days.
You’ll need to clean your bridge every day, to prevent problems such as bad breath and gum disease. You also have to clean under the false tooth every day. Your dentist or hygienist will show you how to use a bridge needle or special floss, as a normal toothbrush cannot reach.
How do bridges work?
The most common method uses two crowns either side of the tooth gap, made of porcelain or metal. These are permanently bonded to your natural teeth either side of the gap, with the false tooth, or teeth, sat in the middle.
Alternatively, if the teeth either side of the missing tooth or teeth are strong and healthy, it may be possible to fit an adhesive bridge. This bridge has wings either side which are bonded to the inner surfaces of the supporting teeth – removing the need to prepare these teeth for full coverage crowns.