One of the major flaws in the making of standard dental bridges is grinding away of adjacent teeth that support the bridge (support pillars). In many patients these adjacent teeth are healthy or have small cavities and the preparation stage is a too invasive and undesirable procedure.
The best option in this case is the placement of an implant, but this procedure is not affordable for all patients, and this necessitates the search for another option.
In modern dentistry a technology for the production of adhesive bridges without grinding away of the teeth is used more and more. This is possible thanks to an innovative material called glass fibre.
These are special fibers made from a huge amount of glass threads, dipped in a special resin base that are linked inseparably and give exceptional strength and durability to the material. These materials were originally developed for use in motorsports (Formula 1) and aircraft industry, due to their exceptional strength and lightness, and they are used for the production of elements in the wings of Stealth aircrafts. They were introduced in dentistry in the late 90s, when they were used for making temporary bridges placed over implants and were to last for about six months before completion of osseointegration. Clinical observations in patients, who had their implants completed later than the required period, showed that this type of bridges have greater endurance than expected and can be used as permanent.
Glass fiber bridges have several advantages: they have great strength, provide a strong adhesive bond, do not irritate the gums, do not contain metal and are suitable for allergic patients. They can be easily remodeled, fixed and corrected directly in the mouth. They provide good biological compatibility of the device with the teeth and gums. They also distribute the functional chewing pressure as with natural teeth and cost less than metal-ceramic bridges.
The adhesive bridges without grinding away can be made in the absence of one or two teeth. Another important advantage is that they can be made in one day. Fabrication of glass fiber bridges can be done in one visit to the dentist, which lasts about 4-5 hours. Tiny furrows with a size of only 1-2 mm are developed on the carrier teeth, and if there is a dental caries or an old filling, no additional drilling is performed except for what it is required to clean the decay. What follows is the placement of dental dam – canvas isolation, which facilitates the work of the dentist and provides comfort to the patient.
The furrows or the cavities are treated in the same way as photopolymer fillings. The required number glass fibers are cut in specific length and are glued in the grooves of the supporting teeth, using a liquid photopolymerizable composite and a photopolymer lamp. In the next stage, the missing tooth is modeled with photopolymer on the stable basis of the fiber. After the desired shape is achieved, it is proceeded to cleaning, polishing and fitting with regards to the adjacent teeth.
So in one visit without preparation of the supporting teeth, a highly aesthetic bridge device is produced that has biological compatibility, robustness and excellent aesthetic qualities. If properly maintained and made precisely, this type of bridges withstand many years and can be remodeled and repaired in the mouth. If a decision for placing implants is made, the pontic is removed quickly and easily without damaging the adjacent healthy supporting teeth.