A dental bridge refers to a prosthesis used to replace a single missing tooth or multiple missing teeth. A traditional bridge typically involves two teeth that sit either side of a missing tooth space. A crown is used to fill or ‘bridge’ the missing gap; it sits on top of the gum tissue and is attached to the teeth either side of the gap, or, a single tooth on one side. There are, however, various bridge designs and a bridge may also be replaced to fill gaps where more than one tooth is missing. In some cases, a dental bridge may be retained by implants. Bridges may be made of porcelain, metal or a combination of the two. They are very aesthetic and are designed to match any remaining teeth.
To have a bridge placed, the teeth either side or on one side of the missing space need to be shaped. Your dentist will then take impressions (moulds) of your teeth, which are sent to a dental laboratory for the bridge to be made. In the interim, a temporary bridge can be placed. At the second visit, the real bridge can be bonded to the teeth or tooth involved.