Health,  Procedures

Dental Bridges: Cost, Types, Before and After, Pros and Cons, NHS

Key Facts:

  • Dental bridges are used to replace missing teeth
  • They can improve your ability to chew and speak properly
  • There are various types of dental bridges
  • Regular dental hygiene is important to keep your bridge in good condition
  • Dental bridges are a more permanent solution than dentures

What Are Dental Bridges?

Dental bridges are prosthetic devices used to bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth. They are composed of two or more crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap and a false tooth/teeth in between. These anchoring teeth are called abutment teeth, and the false teeth are called pontics. Pontics can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain, or a combination of these materials.

The Importance of Replacing Missing Teeth

Replacing missing teeth is important for maintaining proper oral health. A gap in your teeth can cause the remaining teeth to shift, which can result in a bad bite or the loss of additional teeth. Dental bridges help alleviate these problems by using the surrounding teeth as anchors to hold a false tooth in the place where the tooth is missing.

Types of Dental Bridges

There are 4 main types of dental bridges:

  • Traditional Bridges: These are the most common type of dental bridges where crowns are created for the tooth or implant on either side of the missing tooth, with a pontic in between.
  • Cantilever Bridges: These are used when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth. This is not very common and not recommended for the back of the mouth where it can put too much pressure on other teeth and damage them.
  • Maryland Bonded Bridges: Also known as resin-bonded bridge or a Maryland bridge, this type of bridge is made of porcelain, porcelain fused to metal, or plastic teeth and gums supported by a metal framework.
  • Implant-Supported Bridges: They are supported by implants and not by natural teeth. In most cases, one implant is placed for every missing tooth, and this series of implants holds the bridge in place.

Procedure for Getting a Dental Bridge

Procedure for getting a dental bridge involes the following steps:

  • Initial Consultation: Your dentist will assess the health of your gums and other teeth to determine if you are a candidate for a dental bridge.
  • Preparation of Abutment Teeth: Receiving a bridge requires the removal of part of the teeth that will serve as anchors.
  • Impressions: Your dentist will take impressions of your teeth which will serve as the model from which the bridge, pontic, and crowns will be made.
  • Temporary Bridge: You will be given a temporary bridge to protect your exposed teeth while the dental bridge is being made.
  • Fitting of the Bridge: Once your bridge has been manufactured, your dentist will remove your temporary bridge, and the new one will be adjusted to achieve a proper fit.
  • Follow-Up Visits: Additional visits may be necessary to ensure that the fit of the metal framework and bite are correct.

Caring for Your Dental Bridge

Regular brushing and flossing are crucial for keeping your bridge and surrounding teeth healthy. Your dentist may also recommend using antiseptic mouthwash and having regular dental cleanings.

Pros and Cons of Dental Bridges


  • Restore the appearance of your smile
  • Help maintain the shape of your face.
  • Distribute the forces in your bite properly


  • Healthy structures of adjacent teeth are removed
  • Might not last as long as implants

Cost of Dental Bridges

The cost of dental bridges varies depending on the type of bridge selected and the area of the country in which the procedure is performed. Dental insurance will typically pay a percentage of the fee depending on the individual dental plan.

Bottom line

Dental bridges are an effective solution for replacing missing teeth. They can restore your smile, improve your bite, and prevent future dental issues. It’s important to discuss the options with your dentist to determine the best type of bridge for your situation and ensure you understand the costs and care associated with dental bridges.

This article is complete and was published on June 15, 2023, and last updated on August 26, 2023.

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