What are dental crowns and dental bridges?
Dental bridges and crowns are both rental restorations that dentists use to replace missing teeth. They can be used to replace a single missing tooth or multiple teeth missing in a row.
Dental crowns and bridges are often used together. A bridge generally consists of a tooth replacement in the middle and two crowns at either side, that literally bridge the gap of missing teeth. This is effective if the teeth on either side of the missing tooth are healthy enough to support a bridge.
A dental crown caps the surface of a tooth, restoring its strength and appearance. It can protect weak teeth, restore broken teeth, cover teeth that are misshapen or discoloured, and secure dental bridges. Crowns can be made of stainless steel, a metal (such as gold), porcelain and metal, resin, or ceramic.
Bridges are dental appliances that include crowns and artificial teeth. They help to stabilize surrounding teeth, helping to ensure that they don't shift out of place and fill gaps in missing teeth.
- They make speaking and eating easier
- Dental crowns and bridges help support facial tissue
- They can renew your confidence when smiling with a more uniform appearance
- They prevent the shifting of surrounding teeth, improving the long-term health of your mouth
Placing Crowns & Bridges
Your dentist will prepare healthy teeth on either side of the missing tooth. This involves filing them to the shapes and sizes required to allow for the crowns to be placed.
Placing dental bridges in your smile isn't a surgical operation and patients will be awake during the procedure. If you suffer from anxiety around your dental care, however, your dentist may offer some techniques to reduce your fear or suggest dental sedation as a way to help you relax. Speak to your dentist to see if this is a solution for you.
To help ensure that your dental bridge will fit your smile, a dentist will take measurements and imprints of the teeth that surround it. In the same cases, temporary crowns may be made that may need to be removed when a permanent crown is being placed.
Your dentist will numb the area receiving the crowns and bridge by using local anesthesia. The bridge will then be cemented in place.
In the case of multiple missing teeth or teeth that aren't able to support the bridge, the bridge could be anchored to dental implants. Your dentist will discuss your options with you.
What to Expect
Recovery time is quite short, with most people adapting to their new replacement teeth immediately.
Crowns and bridges will need to be brushed and flossed every day just like regular teeth. They are quite durable and are able to withstand normal use like biting or chewing. if you take proper care of them, they should last around 10 years, help to make them suitable long-term options for dental restorations when you are missing one or more teeth.