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Bridges: Replace Missing Teeth




What is a bridge?

A bridge is a dental appliance that consists of two crowns that support an artificial tooth (or teeth) between them to fill in a space left by missing teeth. Bridges can be made from either gold or porcelain, and can be used for both front and back teeth.


What is a bridge used for?

A bridge replaces one or more missing teeth. When a missing tooth is not replaced, the teeth that surround the gap can move into the space, causing bite, jaw joint, and esthetic problems.


How is a bridge placed?

The teeth on either side of the missing tooth are prepared for crowns. An impression is taken to give a highly accurate reproduction of the shape of the teeth and the space that will be filled with an artificial tooth. A provisional restoration is temporarily cemented onto the teeth, and the mold is sent to a dental laboratory where a custom bridge is fabricated. The bridge is then cemented to the teeth.



A bridge prevents the problems caused by teeth drifting into a missing tooth’s space. A bridge stays in the mouth (unlike a denture), and functions nearly the same as the natural teeth.



May need to be re-cemented or replaced due to normal wear. Cleaning around a bridge requires special attention for flossing under the artificial tooth (teeth).


Other possible treatments:

If a bridge is not a feasible treatment, the space may be filled either by an implant or a denture.