A dental bridge is a replacement for one or more missing teeth that is fixed in place and not removable. The bridge can be made to look and feel like a tooth was never lost, it functions like a tooth and is extremely durable.
If a person is missing a tooth in the front or back of the mouth a number of changes will occur (all bad) if that tooth is not replaced. The problems are:
- The teeth next to the missing tooth tend to tip over.
- The tooth above or below the missing tooth that used to have a tooth to bite against now begins to move into the missing space.
- Gaps begin to open between the teeth near the missing tooth.
- Food trapping decay, periodontal disease, and bad breath all follow in the wake of this missing tooth.
Replacing a Lost Tooth
Some of the options available today to replace a missing tooth are:
- A bridge (a not removable tooth replacement)
- An implant
- A partial denture (a removable tooth replacement)
“Bridge” is a good word for these dental appliances because the dental bridge is fitted to the tooth on either side of the missing tooth, much like a bridge crosses over a river by resting on two banks. These anchor teeth are slightly shaped to allow a crown to be placed over them, and are joined by a middle tooth which will replace the missing tooth. When the bridge is bonded or cemented into place the replacement tooth has the good looks and strength of the original tooth.
Our dentist has placed many of bridges and our patients have found them to be comfortable, very functional, very natural and aesthetic looking. Patients even forget that it is not their natural tooth!