Dental bridges are a type of dental prosthetic that are used to replace one or more missing teeth. A bridge is typically made up of two crowns, which are placed on the teeth on either side of the gap left by the missing tooth (or teeth), and a false tooth (or teeth) in between, known as a pontic. The false tooth is usually made of a strong material such as porcelain or gold, and is designed to look like a natural tooth.
There are different types of bridges, depending on the situation. A traditional bridge is the most common type and it consist of one or more pontic that are fused between two crowns which are placed on the adjacent teeth. A cantilever bridge is similar to a traditional bridge, but it only attaches to one adjacent tooth. Resin-bonded bridges, which is also called a Maryland bridge, are made of plastic teeth and gums supported by a metal framework. They use a metal or porcelain wing on each side of the bridge to hold it in place by being bonded to the back of the existing teeth.
The procedure for getting a bridge typically involves taking an impression of the teeth, which is used to create a model of the mouth. The bridge is then made to fit this model, and is usually cemented in place by the dentist.
The purpose of a bridge is to fill the gap left by missing teeth, and to restore the ability to chew and speak properly, as well as to maintain the shape of the face and the bite, which can be affected by missing teeth. Additionally, it prevent the surrounding teeth from drifting, tilting, or becoming loose.