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A bridge is a custom-made replacement tooth or teeth that fill the space where one or more teeth are missing.
The bridge restores your bite and helps keep the natural shape of your face.
This brochure will review the steps involved in making your bridge. Your dentist can recommend which type of bridge is best for you based on your specific needs.
Position of teeth immediately after a tooth is lost.
If the tooth is not replaced, other teeth can drift out of position and change the bite.
A missing tooth is a serious matter. Teeth are made to work together. When you lose a tooth, the nearby teeth may tilt or drift into the empty space. Your teeth in the opposite jaw may also shift up or down into the space. This can affect your bite and place more stress on your teeth and jaw joints, possibly causing pain and damage.
Teeth that have tipped or drifted are also harder to clean. This puts them at a higher risk for tooth decay and gum disease.
When a tooth is missing, the bone may shrink. If that happens, it may change the way the jawbone supports the lips and cheeks. Over time, this can make your face look older.
To replace a missing tooth with a conventional three-unit bridge, teeth next to the gap are reduced.
The custom-made bridge is placed over the prepared teeth.
After adjustments are made, the bridge is cemented into place.
A fixed bridge means that your dentist uses existing natural teeth on both sides of your missing tooth (or teeth) to help hold your bridge in place. Placing a bridge usually takes more than one dental visit.
A bridge is placed on implants
After the bridge is placed
Dental implants may be used to support a bridge. Implants are posts that are surgically placed into the jaw. Bone will hold the implants in place.
Bridges are made from metal, ceramics, or a combination of the two. Your dentist will talk with you about the materials that are best for you and your mouth.
Using a floss threader, insert floss under the bridge.
Gently rub the side of each tooth next to the bridge with the floss, cleaning under the gum, too.
Rub the floss from side to side along the underside of the pontic.
A bridge can fail if the support teeth or the jawbone is damaged by dental disease. Follow these tips for good oral health: