Missing teeth can affect not only your appearance but the function and health of your teeth and jaw, as well. The teeth adjacent to the missing tooth may start to drift or tilt into the space, and teeth in the opposing jaw may begin to shift toward the area of the missing tooth. In order to preserve your overall dental health, it’s important to replace the single missing tooth or multiple missing teeth. A common treatment that prevents shifting teeth and restores full function to a small missing section of teeth is a dental bridge.
A dental bridge replaces missing teeth with pontics, or artificial teeth. The pontics are supported on either end by prepared natural teeth. Once fabricated and fitted, a dental bridge will be permanently “fixed”, or cemented into place. Bridges can be made of porcelain or one of the many newer ceramic materials that have been developed.
Dental Bridge Process
During the first appointment, your doctor will take an impression of your teeth that will be used to make the temporary bridge.
Next, the teeth on either side of the missing tooth are prepared so that they can support the structure for the new tooth.
A second impression is made of the prepared teeth, which will be used by the dental lab to fabricate the permanent bridge. While it is being made, you will be provided with the temporary bridge.
When the permanent bridge is ready, your temporary bridge will be removed and replaced with the permanent one.
Your bridge will function and look just like your natural teeth.