What is a spring cantilever bridge?
A spring cantilever bridge is one of those things that you might run into once in your career. They were never popular even in pre-dental implant days, but had their place.
Spring cantilever bridge rationale
The spring cantilever bridge replaces a single upper tooth that is lost. It can either be a lateral or central incisor. A posterior molar is usually the tooth that gets a crown and acts as the support for the pontic tooth. While I can think of some instances that would benefit from this the rarity of it’s use means labs aren’t familiar with it and neither are other dentists. Making things that people aren’t familiar with is inviting future issues so I would be hesitant to ever do one. The ideal case is a person without bone for a dental implant and who has untouched adjacent teeth and wants to keep a diastema that they have. The diastema is really key to the recommendation of these. If there is no diastema then a standard cantilever dental bridge would be ideal.
Although few adults would ever need one there is however, a use in pediatric dentistry. When a child loses a tooth to trauma or decay long before the final will come in and we need to replace it a spring cantilever bridge would work. Again not a common thing.
Spring cantilever bridge photos