I have a new 6 unit bridge it feels cheap almost like a temp bridge. Why no silver on back of bridge like my other bridges have?

I also have 2 other bridges that are porcelain and feel strong . They have silver on the back of the teeth (maybe for strength) .my question is why would some bridges have the silver on the back of them and this one doesn't. It feels so cheap like its plastic not porcelain. I looked today with a mirror in my mouth and this bridge is all white no silver on underside. Thanks for any answers.

Doctor Answers 1

Bridge Materials : Yesterday, today and tomorrow. What is the best safest and strongest materials.

For many years the porcelain fused to precious metal bridge was the gold standard of care.  Over time, many dentists switched from precious metals to semi-precious and non-precious metals.  Many of these contained high levels of nickel, zinc, beryllium and other metals.  

These changes were driven by ever shrinking insurance coverage and restrictions as insurance companies decreased payouts and increased profits.  When dental insurance began in the mid 1950's the average coverage was $1000 a year with virtually no restrictions.  Today, 60 years later the average dental insurance policy still covers $1000 per year.

With insurance companies squeezing costs non-precious alloys became the norm even though they were not suitable for all patients.  There was also a huge growth in dental crowns and bridges being made in china, Caribean islands and other areas where labor costs were cheap.  

Patients were rarely told about these overseas manufacturing that could have severe health implications.  There is no laws that say dental consumers need to be informed of where they are made.

We have now seen several generations of ceramic bridges without metal substructures many produced on cad-cam ccomputers and milling machines that are often highly esthetic and durable and safe.

Going back to your bridge, it may be Zirconia based or lithium silicate based (e-max) and may be far superior to porcelain to non precious and equal to parcelain to precious metal at lower cost.

I do not know what the material is but many fine dental restorations have no metal substructures.

Regardless of the materials a bridge is made from,  dentistry is an art and science and the best materials will fail with poor design or cementation and bonding procedures.  The high end porcelain to metal restorations are probable still gold standard that all restorations are compared to.  

Ira L Shapira DDS, D,ABDSM, D,AAPM, FICCMO
Chair, Alliance of TMD Organizations
Diplomat, American Academy of Pain Management
Diplomat, American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine
Regent & Fellow, International College of CranioMandibular Orthopedics
Board Eligible, American Academy of CranioFacial Pain
Dental Section Editor, Sleep & Health JournalMember, American Equilibration Society
Member, Academy of Applied Myofunctional Sciences

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.