Crowns & Bridges
What are bridges and why do I need them?
A bridge is made up of two crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap – these two anchoring teeth are called abutment teeth. The false teeth are called pontics and can be made from gold, alloys, porcelain or a combination of these materials. Dental bridges are supported by natural teeth or implants.
Why is it necessary to replace missing teeth?
What is a bridge and how is it attached?
It is an artificial tooth/ teeth suspended between natural teeth, taking support from them. The artificial tooth rests on the jaw area with the missing tooth, being replaced. A fixed bridge is commonly cemented to the natural teeth next to the space left by the missing tooth/teeth.
What materials are used in a bridge?
Bridges are made from metal, ceramic or both. The dentist considers the appearance and function and can discuss the material best suited for you.
Caring for your bridge
To prevent damage to the bridge, avoid chewing hard foods, ice or other hard objects, such as pencils. This is especially important for tooth coloured crowns. Brush twice a day, floss or use an interdental cleaner once a day to remove plaque. See your dentist regularly for examination and professional cleaning.
Are there any other options for replacing teeth?
Yes, there is a very modern and state of art tooth/teeth replacements – dental implants. Although functionally and aesthetically they are superior, their placement involves surgery and is a relatively expensive treatment. Dental implants have their own indications and contraindications.
Replacement of missing teeth is necessary to maintain the health and integrity of your oral apparatus.
Why do I need a Crown?
If you want a smile that’s your crowning glory, you may need a crown to cover a tooth and restore it to its normal shape and size. A crown can make your tooth stronger and improve its appearance.
It can cover and support a tooth with a large filling when there aren’t enough teeth left. It can be used to attach a bridge, protect a weak tooth from breaking or restore one that’s already broken. A crown is a good way to cover teeth that are discoloured or badly shaped. It’s also used to cover a dental implant.
If your dentist recommends a crown, it’s probably to correct one of these conditions. Your dentist’s primary concern, like your, is helping you keep your teeth healthy and your smile bright – literally, your crowning glory!!
1. Metals used in crowns include gold alloy, other alloys (for example, palladium) or a base-metal alloy (for example, nickel or chromium). Compared with other crown types, less tooth structure needs to be removed with metal crowns, and tooth wear to opposing teeth is kept to a minimum. Metal crowns withstand biting and chewing forces well and probably last the longest in terms of wear down. Also, they rarely chip or break. The metallic colour is the main drawback. Metal crowns are a good choice for out-of-sight molars.
2. Porcelain-fused-to-metal dental crowns can be colour matched to your adjacent teeth (unlike the metallic crowns). However, more wearing to the opposing teeth occurs with this crown type compared with metal or resin crowns. The crown’s porcelain portion can also chip and break off. Next to all-ceramic crowns, porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns look most like normal teeth. However, sometimes the metal underlying the crown’s porcelain can show through as a dark line, especially at the gum line and even more so if your gums recede. These crowns can be a good choice for front or back teeth.
3. All-resin dental crowns are less expensive than other crown types. However, they wear down over time and are more prone to fractures than porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns.
4. All-ceramic or all-porcelain dental crowns provide the best natural colour match than any other crown type and may be more suitable for people with metal allergies. However, they are not as strong as porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns and they wear down opposing teeth a little more than metal or resin crowns. All-ceramic crowns are a good choice for front teeth.
5. Temporary vs permanent. Temporary crowns can be made in your dentist’s office whereas permanent crowns are made in a dental laboratory. Temporary crowns are made of acrylic or stainless steel and can be used as a temporary restoration until a permanent crown is constructed by the dental laboratory.
An impression is made to provide an exact model of the prepared tooth. Your dentist along with the lab technician (following the dentists instructions), then uses the model to make the crown according to its size and shape.
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