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If you're missing one or more teeth, you may notice a difference in chewing and speaking. There are options to help restore your smile. Dental bridges act as a bridge to connect gaps usually caused by one or more missing teeth. Bridges are used to restore your smile and your ability to speak and chew properly by replacing the empty gap with an artificial tooth. They are also used to prevent teeth from moving out of position. Bridges help maintain the shape of your face, as well as alleviating the stress in your bite by replacing missing teeth.
A bridge is made up of two or more crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap -- these two or more anchoring teeth are called abutment teeth – and a false tooth/teeth in between. These false teeth are called pontics and can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of these materials. Dental bridges are supported by natural teeth or implants.
Sometimes called a fixed partial denture, a bridge replaces missing teeth with artificial teeth, looks great, and literally bridges the gap where one or more teeth may have been. The restoration can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain or a combination of these materials and is bonded onto surrounding teeth for support. Unlike a removable bridge, which you can take out and clean, a fixed bridge can only be removed by a dentist. With good dental hygiene bridges can last up to 15 years.
An implant bridge attaches artificial teeth directly to the jaw or under the gum tissue. Depending on which type of bridge your dentist recommends, its success depends on its foundation. So it's very important to keep your remaining teeth healthy and strong.