Bridges are used when there are teeth missing. The teeth on either side of the space are prepared as for crowns and the crowns are linked by the bridge tooth.
Traditionally metal bonded to porcelain was mostly used for bridges but with modern ceramic bridges such as Procera and Lava are now providing a suitable alternative with superior appearance.
The teeth supporting the bridge must first be prepared under local anaesthetic and then impressions of the preparation of the prepared teeth and opposing teeth taken . Temporary crowns are usually cemented at the end of this visit and the impressions sent to a dental laboratory where the bridge is fabricated. Usually about 2 weeks later the temporary crowns are removed and the bridge is cemented into place.
Complex crown and bridge cases sometimes require diagnostic study casts and wax ups of the proposed crowns/bridges for the dentist and patient to assess how everything will look at the end of treatment.