Sometimes a tooth becomes so severely damaged due to decay, cracked teeth or trauma that the area is too large to restore with a traditional filling. Such cases may call for a dental crown. One option to replacing missing teeth when teeth exist on either side of the space is a bridge.
Both crowns and bridges fit completely over the affected teeth. To prepare for a crown or bridge, the tooth is prepared by being trimmed down (reduced) to accommodate the crown or bridge. The crown or bridge restores the size, shape and look of your tooth, and more importantly restores function. Learn more about crowns and bridges below.
A dental crown, sometimes called a cap, completely covers your damaged tooth. It is cemented into place and offers a strong, solid, good-looking replacement for a natural tooth. A crown is created in a lab and is made from models your dentist makes with impressions, so it fits your mouth perfectly; replicating the shape, size and position of your severely damaged tooth.
No matter the reason you need a crown, it is well worth it. Your tooth will be stronger and more stable, it will last longer, it will look better, and you’ll feel better.
Missing a tooth and having a gap in between your teeth isn’t just unsightly, it can cause other problems. Talking and chewing may be difficult. Teeth adjacent to the space will eventually begin to shift into the empty space which will affect your bite, may lead to gum disease and possibly even jaw joint disorders like temporomandibular joint (TMJ) issues.
One way to take care of a gap caused by a missing tooth is with a dental bridge. There are removable dental bridges, also called partial dentures, that can be removed and cleaned like dentures, and there are permanent dental bridges, sometimes called fixed partial dentures.
A dental bridge is called a bridge because it literally bridges the gap where one or more teeth used to be. Bridges are cemented to the teeth adjacent to the empty space. The adjacent teeth, called abutments, serve as the anchors for the bridge. The adjacent teeth are trimmed down and capped with a crown, and then a replacement tooth, called a pontic, is attached to those crowns to form the bridge. The unit is securely cemented to your teeth and your smile and ability to chew food is improved.
There are several types of dental bridges. Each bridge is made with different materials and is better suited for certain areas of the mouth and for certain types of situations.
LIProsthodontics is here to provide you and your family the highest quality dental care; creating healthy and beautiful smiles in a relaxing environment. We are dedicated to providing you with the highest standards of care in Restorative, Cosmetic, Implant, and General Dentistry.