A bridge is a dental prosthetic that fills a space that a tooth previously occupied. A bridge may be necessary to prevent:
- Shifting of the teeth that can lead to bite problems (occlusion) and/or jaw problems or even result in periodontal disease.
- Bridges safeguard the integrity of existing teeth and help maintain a healthy, vibrant smile.
Types of Bridges
- Fixed bridge- this is the most popular and consists of a filler tooth that is attached to two crowns which fit over the existing teeth and hold the bridge in place.
- The “Maryland” bridge is commonly used to replace missing front teeth and consists of a filler that is attached to bands that are bonded to the abutment teeth. The metal bands consist of tooth-colored wings and, in some rare cases, metal.
- The Cantilever bridge is often used when there are teeth on only one side of the span. A typical three-unit cantilever bridge consists of two crowned teeth positioned next to each other on the same side of the missing tooth space. The filler tooth is then connected to the two crowned teeth which extend into the missing tooth space.