Crowns and bridges have been staples of general dentistry for generations. However, innovation has not bypassed these popular restorations. In fact, today’s dental crowns and bridges are more beautiful, durable, and versatile than ever.
Restoring teeth with dental crowns
The familiar dental crown, also called a cap, fits over a tooth like a thimble. It shrouds the tooth in high-strength porcelain, providing both functional and cosmetic restoration.
Dental crowns are most often recommended to:
- Restore and protect a tooth following root canal treatment
- Repair a tooth that has been broken or fractured
- Support a dental bridge
- Correct a misshapen tooth
Replacing teeth with dental bridges
Crown-and-bridgework is one of the most popular treatments for replacing a single tooth. Similar techniques can be used to replace several teeth, though less common. A fixed dental bridge is comprised of crowns, which are permanently attached to a false tooth. Once in place, the false tooth fits exactly where your natural tooth was. It quite literally bridges the gap in your smile, restoring aesthetics and chewing ability.
Dental bridges let you smile with confidenceVideo Transcript
What to expect – the procedure for crowns or bridges
The first step is a consultation and oral evaluation, to determine if a crown or bridge is right for you. The actual procedure only involves a few steps, and a couple of appointments.
- We begin by preparing the tooth or teeth for crowning. This involves removing decayed material and shaping the structure. Impressions are taken to ensure an ideal fit of the new restoration.
- A temporary crown is attached to each tooth being treated. This protects the prepared tooth while your permanent restoration is being fabricated.
- The new crown or bridge is created in a dental laboratory, using high-strength porcelain. The color is adjusted to match your natural tooth enamel for an indiscernible restoration.
- During the next appointment, the temporary crown is removed. The permanent restoration is evaluated for fit and appearance, adjustments are made if needed.
- In the final step, dental crowns are affixed to teeth. You are ready to show off your new smile!
Implant supported crowns and bridges
Modern implant technology has given rise to a new class of dental crowns and bridges, which are not attached to teeth at all. These specially designed restorations are lifelike ceramic replicas of natural teeth, which attach to tiny titanium posts implanted in the jawbone. A crown replaces a single tooth, while a bridge replaces multiple teeth.