A crown is used to repair a tooth that is structurally weak. This can happen when the tooth develops a crack, has a large cavity, or needs a large filling replaced. When a tooth has a great deal of damage it must be strengthened to avoid the possibility of losing it completely. Other times a crown is recommended when preparing for bridge work and may also be used to repair teeth that have become discolored or otherwise distracting visually.
When several teeth in a row are either missing or need to be replaced, a bridge may be recommended. Replacement teeth on a small metal bar are attached to the healthy teeth on either side of the space and permanently cemented into the mouth. Aesthetically speaking, the results are very similar to porcelain veneers or crowns.
Which One Is Right For Me?
When you come in for a consultation, Dr. Schuster will evaluate your teeth and discuss your goals and options with you. Crowns and bridges are appropriate in different situations, and we will help you decide what’s right for you. We will also help you decide the best material for your crown or bridge. Porcelain is what we use most often because it is extremely durable and stain resistant, feels comfortable, and is the most aesthetically appealing.
Crowns typically take two visits to complete. During the first visit, the dental team will make an impression of the tooth and surrounding area. Dr. Schuster will remove the damaged portion of the tooth and prepare it for the temporary crown. This temporary crown is usually made of acrylic and will be cemented into place at the first visit.
At the second visit, Dr. Schuster will remove the temporary crown and thoroughly clean and prepare the area for the permanent crown. After seating the crown in place, she will adjust it along with the surrounding teeth to make it completely comfortable.
Getting a Bridge
Bridges also take a minimum of two visits to complete. At the first visit, Dr. Schuster will begin by altering the teeth on either side to accommodate the bridge. This is usually done with crowns. Impressions will also be made of the area to receive the bridge. Once the surrounding teeth are ready, a temporary bridge will be attached.
At the next visit, the permanent bridge will be adjusted to fit comfortably and then it will be permanently cemented into place. It may take a few weeks to get used to the bridge, but it should soon feel just as comfortable as your natural teeth.
Bridges and crowns can make a big difference in your overall appearance and your oral health, and they can both last for 10-15 years with proper care. Sometimes brushing and flossing can be difficult at first, especially with a bridge, but the Stonebridge Ranch Dentistry team will show you step-by-step what you need to do to keep your new teeth clean and healthy.