Bridges Specialist

Herrick Lai, DDS -  - Dentist


Herrick Lai, DDS

Dentist located in Gramercy, New York, NY

When people have a gap between teeth, dental bridges can correct their smile. Dr. Lai helps patients in New York City, NY fix these gaps using dental bridges which look just like natural teeth. All from his welcoming, Gramercy area located practice, PreZen Dental.

Bridges Q & A

What is a dental bridge?

A dental bridge does exactly what it sounds like, it bridges the gap between one or more missing teeth. A bridge is secured in place by anchoring it to two or more surrounding teeth. These teeth have been strengthened with crowns to make sure they can anchor the bridge without being damaged. These teeth are referred to as abutment teeth. A prosthetic tooth or teeth sitting between the abutment teeth. These are called pontics. Pontics can be made from porcelain, gold, alloys, or a combination. Bridges can also be held in place using dental implants.

What can bridges do?

Bridges can:

  • Fill in a smile
  • Restore speaking and chewing
  • Help maintain the shape of the face
  • Correct bite issues
  • Keep remaining teeth from shifting inward

What types of bridges are there?

There are three main forms of bridges used at the practice:

  • Traditional bridges- A crown is placed on the neighboring teeth, or an implant is used, and a pontic is placed in between, filling the gap. They are the most commonly used type of bridge. These are made from either ceramic or porcelain-fused-to-metal.
  • Maryland bonded bridges- Also called resin-bonded bridges; these are created from porcelain, porcelain-fused-to-metal, or plastic teeth and gums which are reinforced with a porcelain or metal frame. To secure the bridge to the neighboring teeth, metal or porcelain wings adhere to either end.
  • Cantilever bridges- These are used when only one side of the missing tooth or teeth has a tooth to act as an anchor. These are not used very often.

What is the process for getting a dental bridge?

During the first visit, the abutment teeth are made ready for their crowns by shaving down a portion of tooth’s surface to create enough space. Next, impressions of the gap and adjacent teeth are obtained, and the pontic, bridging pieces and crowns are ordered from a dental lab. Dr. Lai will provide a temporary bridge to protect the exposed teeth and gums while waiting for the permanent bridge. During the final visit, the temporary bridge is taken off and the permanent bridge secured. If needed, adjustments can be made to ensure it fits properly.

Please contact our office if you have questions regarding insurance or payment options.

Delta Dental
MetLife Dental
Principal Financial Group