Crowns & Bridges Q & A
What is a dental crown?
A crown is a protective covering that's made of porcelain and is designed to surround the entire tooth. Crowns are used to provide strength and protection for teeth that have been significantly damaged by decay or trauma, including broken teeth, and they're also used to hide deep staining and discoloration. Plus, they are used to provide protection for the teeth used to support a bridge, and they're also usually used to strengthen a tooth following a root canal procedure.
What is a bridge?
A bridge is a dental device that's designed to replace missing teeth by literally “bridging” the resulting gap. Bridges use a very strong metal framework to support one or more artificial teeth, or crowns, that are custom-tinted and shaped to match the neighboring teeth. A bridge can be permanently attached to the neighboring teeth or it may be removable, attaching with special clips.
How are crowns and bridges applied?
Two visits are typically required. During the first visit, the teeth on either side of the gap are prepared to receive crowns. A small amount of tooth material is removed to provide room for the crowns, and an impression is made and sent to the lab where the bridge and crowns will be made. Temporary crowns may be applied to protect the teeth. At the second visit, the crowns will be adhered using a strong bonding agent and the bridge will be adjusted for a comfortable fit.
Are crowns and bridges hard to care for?
No, crowns and bridges are designed to be very durable, and they can be cared for with regular brushing and flossing just like your natural teeth. Routine dental visits are also important to ensure your crowns and bridges stay in the best shape possible for years to come.