What is a bridge?

A bridge is a device a dentist inserts to fill a gap where a tooth is missing. A “conventional” bridge consists of a false tooth (or teeth), known as a pontic, which is affixed to a crown on a tooth next to the gap. A “Maryland” bridge, on the other hand, is where the pontic is fixed to the teeth on either side using wings, meaning that it is not necessary to fit a crown to the other teeth.

Alternatives to Bridges

There are two main alternatives to a dental bridge- dentures or dental implants. Dentures are not always the best solution if only one or two teeth need to be replaced, because they can cause difficulties with eating and even speaking, so be sure to seek your dentist’s advice. Dental implants consist of a titanium “screw” which is inserted through the jaw, to which an artificial tooth is attached. Again, these are not always suitable- a patient must be medically fit, have healthy gums and a sufficiently thick jawbone to allow for this procedure. Implants are becoming more widely used, despite these reservations, and despite their high cost

What are bridges made of?

Bridges are usually made of a precious metal. If the bridge will show, porcelain is then bonded to the base. Sometimes, there are other non-precious metals used in the base for strength.

Are bridges expensive?

Although a bridge may seem costly they can be a wise investment that will give many years of good service. It will also improve your appearance and bite. A bridge uses the considerable skill of the dentist and technician, and in this way, it’s similar to ordering a piece of hand-made jewellery.

How do I look after my bridge?

You 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.