A fixed bridge is a replacement for missing teeth. It consists of an attachment of one or more fake teeth attached to the teeth next to the space. Therefore, it requires at least one tooth on each side of the space. It is characterized in several ways. By the number of teeth involved, the design and the materials used.
The number of teeth involved is the sum of the number of fake teeth and the number of tooth attachments. For example a three unit bridge would consist of one fake tooth and two tooth attachments. The more teeth involved the more costly the bridge.
The fake tooth is the same regardless of the bridge design, but the attachment to the tooth varies in three ways. In a full coverage bridge the attachment covers the adjacent teeth entirely like a crown or cap. The attachments fit in the adjacent teeth like fillings in an inlay bridge. With a bonded or Maryland bridge the attachments are exterior to the adjacent teeth.
The following materials are used in bridges; all metal, porcelain, porcelain fused to metal, plastic, and zirconium. At Delmarva Dental Services we have experience in all of these types of bridges. Fixed bridges have a 70% success rate over 15 years.