Fixed Bridges

What is a fixed dental bridge?
A fixed dental bridge is an artificial tooth or teeth, also known as a pontic, which is fused between two crowns placed on the surrounding teeth to fill in the area left by a missing tooth or teeth. Fixed bridges cannot be removed from your mouth like removable partial dentures. Bridges can reduce your risk of gum disease, help correct certain bite issues, and in some cases, even improve your speech. Bridges can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of these materials. The most popular type of fixed bridge is made of porcelain, as it not only looks natural but it can be shaped to replicate original teeth and fit comfortably within your established bite pattern. Your dentist will work with you to decide the best material to use for your individual situation. With proper care and hygiene, bridges can last up to ten years or more.

What’s involved?
To prepare for the fixed bridge, your dentist will give you a mild anesthetic to numb the area. Your dentist will remove an area of the teeth on either side of the space where the bridge will be placed to accommodate the crowns that will hold the bridge in place. Your dentist will make an impression to send to a dental laboratory. The laboratory technicians will create the permanent bridge. Your dentist will place a temporary bridge for you to wear until your next visit.

On your second visit, the dentist will remove your temporary bridge. The permanent bridge will be fitted and the bite adjusted. Your dentist will then cement the permanent bridge to your teeth.

What should I know before receiving a fixed dental bridge?
Dental bridges look natural, and the procedure usually only requires two visits. Your teeth may be mildly sensitive to extreme temperatures following the initial treatment. Fixed bridges require you to use excellent oral hygiene, as bacteria formed from food acids on your teeth and gums can become infected if neglected.