What is a permanent bridge?
A permanent bridge is used to replace one or several missing teeth. It consists of an artificial tooth secured to a metal base. On each end of the prosthesis, a small hook is used to secure the bridge to adjacent teeth. This type of prosthesis is permanent and cannot be removed.
How is a bridge made?
The prosthesis consists of two pillars and one bridge. There are three types: metal-ceramic, all ceramic, or composite resin.
A metal structure covered in layers of porcelain (dental ceramic) that matches the colour and transparency of natural teeth.
A dental prosthesis made entirely out of ceramic. The tooth is made using several layers of ceramic on a ceramic substructure.
The tooth is made out of light-activated paste using a process called photopolymerization. The resin is similar to the material used in white fillings.
A permanent bridge is installed in four steps:
- The adjoining teeth, which will serve as pillars, are trimmed
- A dental impression is made (this is the longest step)
- A temporary bridge is installed while the permanent bridge is made
- The permanent bridge is installed
Two visits are needed to complete the procedure. The first three steps are done during the initial appointment. The temporary bridge is installed to protect exposed gums and teeth while the permanent bridge is being made (which can take up to ten days). Then, the temporary bridge is replaced by the permanent, custom-made bridge.
Advantages of a permanent bridge
- Stops adjacent teeth from migrating to the empty space
- Prevents your natural teeth from becoming prematurely worn down
- Prevents occlusion problems
- Improves digestion thanks to better chewing
- Improves speech
- Looks just like your natural teeth
This procedure may have some inconveniences, so make sure to talk with the dentist about your treatment options.
Just like natural teeth, permanent prostheses must be well taken care of through healthy eating habits and proper oral hygiene. Your dentist can show you the best way to brush and maintain your prosthesis.