Bridges are used to replace missing teeth. Just like a bridge that crosses a gap in a road, dental bridges replace a gap in your smile. A bridge is a popular restoration because it is very durable, has a natural look, and is fixed permanently in your mouth with dental cement. The bridge can be made from porcelain, metal, gold, or a combination of these materials. A bridge is essentially several dental crowns fused together as one unit.

Although a bridge can be a great option for replacing teeth, they also have downsides. For one, the teeth that are adjacent to the space must be altered and weakened in order for them to support the bridge. A bridge relies on at least two healthy teeth to support the new artificial tooth, so these teeth must be trimmed down in size to accommodate the bridge. If the neighboring teeth could benefit from the reinforcing qualities of a crown anyway, then a bridge may be your best option. Also, the success of the bridge depends on your willingness and ability to care for the prosthesis. Special care and technique must be used to clean beneath the bridge.

Alternatives to a bridge include dental implants and removable partial dentures.

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