If a person has a missing tooth/teeth for any length of time, even just one tooth, many problems can arise. The adjacent and opposing teeth can begin to shift. This shift can cause problems with the bite and can lead to periodontal disease (gum disease) as well. In addition, small spaces can open up in other areas of the mouth and cause food packing which can lead to cavities on other teeth and bad breath. So, when a tooth/teeth are lost, it is very important to get them replaced in a timely fashion.
A bridge is a restoration that is used to replace one or more missing teeth. Teeth adjacent to the space are reduced to receive crowns (as described above). These holder crowns are connected with the replacement tooth crown. When these holders crowns are cemented onto their teeth, the replacement tooth crown touches against the tissue of the missing tooth space and it looks, feels and functions like your natural tooth.