When teeth become too weak to survive with fillings due to heavy decay, placing a crown on a tooth can maintain the structure and aesthetics of your mouth, combating the decay. Bridges help by replacing lost teeth without use of a denture or an implant. Dental Bridges and Crowns are incredibly durable and are created to be long lasting (up to 8 years) with good oral hygiene and proper care.

Dental Crown

When a tooth becomes heavily decayed, it is more likely to lose substance and be more prone to break and fracture. The crown is a covering that encases the entire damaged tooth and restores it to the original shape and size. A crown protects a tooth that can no longer be restored with any other type of restoration, like fillings; crowns are especially helpful for teeth that have had a root canal. The goal is to restore the tooth by adding a crown before fracture lines go beyond the gum margin and damage the health of your tooth. There are several options for crowns-

  • Gold
    • Most often this is used on the back teeth. Gold is strong, easy to polish, and less of the tooth needs to be drilled away before having to the impression and fit the crown.
  • Porcelain
    • Porcelain is nearly always used for the front teeth, but is sometimes used for the back teeth.
    • Some porcelain crowns have metal built inside that gives the crown added structural integrity and strength.

First Visit:

  • Take several molds to ensure the accuracy of the impression that will be used to create your custom crown. This process will also be used to create a temporary crown for your tooth.
  • Decay will be removed and surface of the tooth reshaped to properly fit the crown.

Second Visit:

  • The temporary crown will be removed, the tooth cleaned, and the new crown situated on the tooth with close attention to the accuracy of the spacing and bite. You will be given instructions on how to care from your new crown.

Dental Bridges

Bridges allow lost teeth to be replaced without using dentures or dental implants. Essentially how it works is, a false tooth is held in place by being attached to the anchoring teeth on either side. The teeth on either side of the space need to be prepared in a way similar to a crown in order for a bridge to be accepted. It is usually helpful if the teeth already have a crown, teeth that don’t have fillings or other restorative features are more difficult to work with bridges. There are several options for bridges and we can discuss which options would be best for your particular case. Porcelain bridges are often the most popular because they are durable and they resemble your natural teeth.

First Visit:

  • Anchoring teeth are prepared and an impression is made and send to a laboratory to be fabricated. It is possible for temporary bridges to be made and worn until your next appointment.

Second Visit:

  • The framework, or bridge foundation, is thoroughly checked to make sure that it will fit perfectly. A shade is then selected to make sure it matches the anchoring teeth.

Third Visit:

  • It is at this point the permanent bridge is inserted. It is placed, adjusted, polished, and is set in place with permanent cement.