A bridge, also known as a fixed partial denture, is a dental restoration used to replace a missing tooth by joining permanently to adjacent teeth or dental implants.
A bridge is fabricated by reducing the teeth on either side of the missing tooth or teeth by a preparation pattern determined by the location of the teeth and by the material from which the bridge is fabricated. In other words, the abutment teeth are reduced in size to accommodate the material to be used to restore the size and shape of the original teeth in a correct alignment and contact with the opposing teeth.
Not only does a bridge restore function and esthetics, but it also prevents the surrounding teeth from drifting out of position and fill spaces that would otherwise leave surrounding teeth susceptible to tooth decay. Clearly a dental bridge is an excellent treatment option.
The best candidate for a dental bridge is a person with one or more missing teeth and good dental hygiene. Special attention to hygiene at home will need to be taken, especially flossing under the bridge. Furthermore, dental visits, including professional cleanings, should completed every six months.