Do you have missing teeth? If you do, you may be a candidate for an implant-supported bridge. The implant-supported bridge is similar to a regular dental bridge, but it is supported by implants and not by natural teeth. Most of the time, when an implant-supported bridge is used, one implant is placed in the jawbone for each missing tooth. Then the crowns are connected to each other to form one piece.
When Is This Used?
An implant-supported bridge is used when more than one tooth is missing. I may also use it when I am concerned that you might put too much pressure on individual implants that are not connected to each other. If you clench or grind your teeth, enough pressure is put on each implant that the chances increase that they will loosen from the bone and fail. An implant-supported bridge reduces the pressure on the individual implants in the bone, and spreads it across the entire bridge; this helps ensure a great result.
To have the implant placed next to your remaining natural teeth, both the teeth and the surrounding gums must be in good health. If you do not have enough bone to place the bridge or support dental implants, the bone in the affected area can be built up before the actual implant procedure begins. Bone grafting is a newer technique, but highly successful in cases where teeth have been missing a long time, or gum disease has eroded the site.