Do you want to restore your smile? Crowns and Bridges are a great solution to replace missing or damaged teeth. They are fixed or non-removable as they are cemented onto existing teeth or implants by a Dentist or Prosthodontist.
A crown is used to strengthen the tooth and a bridge is used when one or more teeth are missing.
What exactly is a Crown?
A crown is an artificial tooth usually made of porcelain and metal alloy. It’s fitted over the prepared existing tooth and replaces the natural crown of the tooth.
A crown may be used when the natural tooth has been chipped, broken or weakened due to;
- tooth decay
- large fillings
- root canal treatment
- age-related wear and tear
Preparation and fitting the crown
The area is numbed with a local anaesthetic, a drill is used to shape the tooth and to make it 1 to 2 millimetres smaller so the crown can fit over it. An impression is taken which is then sent to a dental technician to make the crown.
A temporary crown is used to protect the prepared tooth. As this isn’t as strong as the final crown, it is best to chew on the opposite side of the mouth and avoid sticky or hard foods.
At the second appointment, the temporary crown is removed and the new one is placed over the tooth. If the shape and colour match, then the crown is cemented to the tooth. This cement usually sets within an hour and within 24 hours reaches full strength.
Once fitted, the crown should feel comfortable and natural like your own tooth. Often minor adjustments are needed afterwards to achieve complete comfort.
What exactly is a Bridge?
A bridge is used to bridge a gap of one or more missing teeth. It consists of multiple ceramic crowns that are connected as one whole unit.
The crowns on either side of the space is called an “abutment” and the crown that fills the space is called a “pontic”.
The steps for fitting the bridge are similar to fitting a crown. The teeth on either side of the gap are shaped and made smaller by drilling. These teeth are fitted with crowns, the entire piece is cemented firmly in place.