I can’t find anyone in the Dallas area that knows about an Encore Bridge. Do you know anyone who does this procedure or is it outdated?
Nikki from Dallas
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The Encore Bridge was never widely popular. It is very technique sensitive, meaning that many dentists weren’t doing it right, resulting in a weak bridge that might either de-bond or break. Furthermore, it was developed by master dental ceramist Uri Yarovesky of Opus One Laboratories in California, and he has been the only lab doing this procedure, to my knowledge. He may even have a patent on it.
Recently, another aesthetic alternative to the Maryland bridge has developed—the zirconia Maryland Bridge.
Zirconia is an extremely strong ceramic that has excellent optical properties. This is easier to place than an Encore Bridge. Here is a photograph of a zirconia Maryland Bridge, courtesy of Dental Arts Laboratories of Peoria, IL.
Some caution is still needed, however. While not as technique sensitive as the Encore Bridge, it is still technique sensitive, and unless a dentist has done several of these successfully, I wouldn’t ask him or her to do one on you. Dentists who haven’t done many tend to think that it can be placed with little or no tooth preparation, but if that is done, there is a strong tendency for the bridge to come loose. An expert cosmetic dentist who does a lot of porcelain bonding work should understand how to do this well. The best approach would probably be to ask a dentist if they have done any of these. If you can’t find an experienced dentist to do this, then I would ask for an understanding up front that if it fails that you will get your money back, or some such guarantee that will be satisfactory to you.
Uri Yarovesky, the inventor of the Encore Bridge, tells me that he has research data showing that the Encore Bridge is stronger than the zirconia Maryland Bridge because it has a greater ability to flex with tooth movement.
– Dr. Hall
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