A dental bridge will replace missing teeth
Bridges can be used to replace missing teeth if there are teeth on either side of the missing tooth. The two teeth are prepared for crowns, then a dental technician can fabricate a bridge with the missing tooth attached to the two crowns. This is all made in one piece to look like three separate teeth.
Depending on the difficulty of the situation it will take a minimum of 90 minutes in a dental chair to prepare the teeth for a bridge. An impression (mould) is taken of the prepared teeth and sent to a dental technician.
Two weeks later the dentist takes about 30 minutes to cement in the bridge. Your new bridge should last for approximately 10 years as long as the supporting teeth stay healthy.
The patient below presented with a broken down back molar and a missing first molar. This was causing the upper and lower teeth to start drifting apart, changing her bite. This also started placing more pressure on the front teeth, causing them to wear as they were now used for chewing.
During treatment the back molar had to be reconstructed to remove all decay and fractures.
The finished outcome shows a bridge in place that connects the missing tooth to the teeth on either side of the gap, restoring the patient’s bite.
Your choices for bridges
Metal alone (high-noble or base metal)
Longevity 20 years to life, gold or silver colour; moderate-to-high initial cost; may be used in any area where metal display is not objectionable.
Porcelain fused to metal
Longevity 10–20 years; tooth-coloured; moderate-to-high initial cost; may be used in any area where extreme stress or grinding habits are not present.
Ceramic non-metal containing crowns
Longevity 10–20 years; moderate-to-high initial cost; may be used in any area where extreme stress or grinding habits are not present. Used when aesthetics is important. (Anything over a three-unit bridge constructed from ceramic alone is not advisable.)
Dental implants are also an option to replace a missing tooth