Crown and bridgework is also referred to as restorative dentistry. They both involve restoring natural teeth that have been damaged, lost, or decayed. If you have missing teeth, bite dysfunction, structural or functional problems, dental crowns or bridges can be used to give you back healthy function. The goal is a healthy mouth that will last a lifetime. Now that is something to smile about.
A crown can be used to restore and strengthen one tooth that has been damaged or decayed, while a bridge can be used to replace one or more missing teeth. Both of these restorations are bonded or cemented to your existing teeth so they cannot be removed like other appliances or partial dentures. They are a permanent replacement and often patients do not remember which teeth have crowns on them.
If you are missing one or more teeth, the teeth around the gap can drift out of position, causing you bite problems. If your teeth have drifted into unnatural positions, they can cause additional dental problems like the loss of more teeth, gum disease, and decay.
To correct the gap caused by a missing tooth and prevent other teeth from drifting into other positions, we may recommend that a dental bridge be placed. A dental bridge is a combination of two tooth crowns and one or more pontics, or natural looking replacement teeth.
We begin by shaping the teeth on either side of the gap so that an abutment crown can be placed on the tooth. The custom crowns are created for your teeth with the pontic, or replacement tooth, attached to the crowns and the bridge is cemented as a single piece. It usually takes about one to three weeks for the permanent dental bridge to be created. In that time, you will be fitted with a provisional dental bridge that will be removed when the permanent one is bonded or cemented into place. This provisional bridge is used as a guide so the patient can try out how the bridge feels and make adjustments prior to delivery.
After the permanent dental bridge is bonded into place, you can resume enjoying life and foods without worrying about any gaps. A dental bridge will not only provide you with the function you need from your teeth, but it will give you a refreshed, full smile.
A crown is a restoration that covers (or “caps”) a tooth to restore it to its normal shape and size, which can strengthen and improve the appearance of the tooth. Crowns are necessary when a tooth has been damaged significantly and cannot be adequately restored with a filling. A crown can protect a weak tooth from fracturing; it also can prevent a cracked tooth from further damage. Crowns can cover discolored or misshapen teeth for more aesthetically pleasing smiles. Crowns are usually needed after a root canal has been performed on a back tooth.