Dental Crown and Bridge

A dental crown is a “cap” used to protect a tooth that has broken down. A dental bridge is a permanent solution to replace missing teeth.

When is a dental crown needed?

A dental crown is indicated when a tooth can no longer hold a filling. Dental crowns are a very common way to restore teeth that have broken or have large cavities. Furthermore, a patient may choose to have crowns placed on front teeth for esthetic purposes. Crowns can restore teeth that are chipped, discolored, or are otherwise negatively affecting the smile. Additionally, crowns can protect teeth that are broken or fractured from further damage. Fractured teeth or teeth with fracture lines should be crowned to avoid further damage to the tooth which could lead to a possible tooth extraction. 

First and foremost, patients with existing permanent tooth crown pain should be evaluated for a new crown and possible root canal. Relief from tooth crown pain depends on the source. For instance, if an existing crowned tooth is painful or there is pain when biting down, there could be a cavity or fracture on the tooth beneath the crown. To address the problem, our team will take an x-ray of the tooth to determine if there is a cavity to the nerve of the tooth or any infection. These findings may indicate the need for a root canal as well as a new crown.

How Long Do Dental Crowns Last?

With good oral hygiene, a dental crown should last many years. A patient who brush and floss regularly and have minimal cavities will crowns that last longer. Additionally, today’s crown materials are very strong and can last years on both front teeth and back teeth.

There are many different types of dental crowns, which are made from some of the safest dental crown materials. Zirconia crowns are a hardened and durable like metal but have the esthetic looks of porcelain crowns. Resultantly, they are made to resemble the anatomy and color of natural teeth. In addition, PFM (porcelain fused to metal) crowns can be used. These have an esthetic layer of porcelain on top of a metal of layer. The metal is used for the fit and seal of the crown on top of the tooth and cannot be seen. In contrast, the porcelain is fused on top of the metal to give the tooth a natural color and appearance. However, there is no “best type of dental crown.” A full examination will determine which type of crown is best for the patient. Ultimately, the functionality and esthetics of the tooth are important when choosing crowns. In the vast majority of cases our team uses zirconia crowns. 

How Much Tooth Is Needed For a Crown?

A damaged tooth requires a “cap” to prevent further damage. For example, if inadequate tooth structure remains a crown cannot be placed on a tooth. However, our team is very successful at placing dental crowns on teeth that have extensive damage.

Temporary Vs Permanent Crown

Temporary crowns are made at the initial dental crown visit to cover the prepped tooth while the dental lab makes the permanent crown. Once the permanent crown is made, the temporary crown is removed and the permanent crown is cemented.

At the initial tooth crown visit, the patient is numbed for optimal comfort. The tooth is prepped so that the crown can fit over the tooth. Next, an impression is made of the tooth and is sent to the dental lab to make the crown. A temporary crown is made for the patient until the permanent dental crown is completed. At the proceeding appointment, the permanent crown is cemented.

What Is A Crown Repair?

A crown repair is indicated when a crown has a minor “chip” on it. For example, if the chip is small and does not affect the fit of the crown, it may be possible to repair. In some instances, bonding material may be used to repair the chipped dental crown. However, this is only indicated on very minor chips.

Dental Bridge

A dental bridge replaces missing teeth. Resultantly, a dental bridge is a permanent solution because the bridge is cemented to existing teeth and cannot be removed by the patient. Bridges are used to replace a missing tooth with a porcelain crown. Furthermore, this will help to enhance your smile and chewing ability. Dental crowns are placed on the adjacent teeth on either side of the open space and connected to the new porcelain tooth in the middle, forming a bridge.

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