What is a crown and when are they needed?
A crown (also called a “cap”) helps keep what’s left of a damaged tooth and maintains bone health and nerve function. A dental crown is often the best option to extend the life of a tooth for years to come.
Crowns are most often used to:
o Restore broken teeth
o Support a tooth that is weakened by a large filling, or several smaller fillings on same tooth.
o Rebuild a tooth after a root canal
o Correct a bite or Alignment of teeth
o Improve the appearance of a discolored tooth
o Cover a dental implant
o Provide support for bridgework
How are crowns placed?
To create a crown, which is basically a hollow, artificial tooth, a dentist, will take an impression of your bite, shape the tooth that needs a crown, and then take another impression in order to create a well-fitting crown. The crown is created, and then cemented to your tooth.
What crown options do I have?
- Metal-Free Crowns (All-Porcelain): A good choice if your crown will shows when you smile, an all-porcelain crown mimics the color and translucency of real teeth, and may work best if you have a Metal Allergy. Porcelain crowns can wear down opposing teeth, however, and are not as durable as gold crowns.
- Gold Crowns (Metal Crowns): Dental crowns made of gold have been used for thousands of years, and for good reason. They are very strong, and can stand up to years of chewing, or even teeth grinding. Gold crowns can last for decades if cared for properly. Negative side is market price of Gold being fluctuant.
- Porcelain fused to Metal Crowns (PFM Crowns): These crowns have a combination of metal sub-structure, layered with Porcelain. It’s a choice for incorporating both strength of metal sub-substructure as well as aesthetics of Porcelain, which most dental insurances approve
What is a Bridge and when are they needed?
Gaps from missing teeth can impact your bite, your appearance, and your speech. Remaining teeth can shift, causing further disruption, pain and an increased likelihood of gum disease. A dental bridge solves these problems by filling the space of a missing tooth or teeth with an artificial tooth that is anchored to your natural teeth or Dental Implants surrounding the space of missing teeth.
You’ll typically need crowns on the teeth that will support the bridge, and getting a bridge is similar to having a crown applied: the process involves making impressions, shaping the teeth and fitting the bridge.
What Bridge options do I have?
As with crowns, you have a similar choice of materials for bridges too. Our dentists and dental assistants can help you decide which material to choose, based on the location of the missing tooth (or teeth), its function, aesthetic considerations and cost (most insurances cover only some material).
Porcelain and All-ceramic Crowns and Bridges can be matched very close to the color of your natural teeth.
Can I Remove My Bridge or Crown And Clean It?
Crowns and most bridges are fixed prosthetic devices. Unlike removable devices such as dentures, which you can take out and clean daily as they are cemented Permanently on to existing teeth or implants.