A bridge is a fixed (cemented and non-removable) dental appliance primarily dedicated to the replacement of one or more missing teeth. There are several types of bridge designs that I would consider to best serve your treatment needs. Classically, cast gold alloy is used to create rigid and durable fixed bridges with the fewest risks to material failure. To improve the aesthetics of bridges from cast gold for use on front and back teeth, porcelain fused-to-gold bridges were created. They are formed by a gold understructure with porcelain fused to the gold on the visible surfaces. This has proven to be a very predictable choice providing a balance between durability and beauty for decades. However, recent developments in ceramic technology have provided the option for highly aesthetic bridges made entirely of porcelain with no gold that can be used in certain circumstances where aesthetics are critical.
Fixed bridges are very predictable and beautiful restorations for replacing one or more teeth. Fixed bridges are more popular with my patients being that they are not removable dental appliances and resemble your natural teeth. They rely on two crowns that are supported by two anchoring teeth (abutment teeth) and are fused to pontics (replacement teeth) that occupy the space created by one or more missing teeth.
Indications for fixed bridges:
- Restore the space of missing teeth
- Restore the function of chewing and speech
- Restore your full smile
- Prevent surrounding teeth from drifting out of position
- Replace existing removable appliances for a cemented restoration
Fixed bridges are but one choice for restoring your teeth. All dental materials have certain advantages and disadvantages but no dental material is capable of lasting forever. As your dentist, I will always advise you on the best material choices for any given situation based upon your needs, dental research, and my experience. Of course excellent oral hygiene practices, good dietary habits, and regular dental visits to my practice will aid in the life of any restoration.