Dental bridges can be used to replace missing teeth by placing group of crowns that are fused together onto the surrounding teeth and over the missing tooth. They are a more cost effective solution for replacing missing teeth than implants and have a good natural appearance. The teeth on either side of the missing tooth are prepared for regular crowns and bridge is slipped onto the surrounding teeth and into the gap where the tooth is missing. The surrounding teeth act as supports for the missing tooth.
Bridges are comprised of regular crowns, which are placed on the surrounding teeth, and “pontic” crowns, which are the crowns used to replace the missing teeth. Both kinds are made of all the same materials as standard crowns, such as porcelain fused to metal, full porcelain or ceramic, and zirconia.
How much do bridges cost?
Bridges are priced per crown, and the cost of the bridge is the number of units (crowns) needed for the bridge multiplied by the individual crown cost.
How many crowns will be needed for my bridge?
The number of regular crowns for the bridge needs to be greater than or equal to the number of pontic crowns. For example, if one tooth is missing, two regular crowns and one pontic crown would be needed, and a three-crown bridge could be placed. If two teeth are missing, a four crown bridge could be placed. However, three missing teeth cannot be replaced with a five crown bridge, as the two regular crowns would not be able to support the pressure and stress exerted by the three pontic crowns during chewing.
How long does it take to complete a bridge?
The bridges themselves can be crafted in the same amount of time as crowns; typically with two visits in about a week.
Can bridges be placed immediate after tooth extractions?
No. The extraction site and gums need to heal for about 6-8 weeks before the permanent bridge can be placed. However, a temporary bridge can be used during the interim period.