So what are Dental Crowns and fixed Tooth Bridges?
How do Crowns work?
Your dentist may recommend a crown to:
How do Bridges work?
A bridge may be recommended if you're missing one or more teeth. Gaps left by missing teeth eventually cause the remaining teeth to move into the empty spaces, resulting in a bad bite. The imbalance caused by missing teeth can also lead to gum disease and clicks in your jaw.
Bridges are "glued" to the natural teeth or implants surrounding the empty space. These teeth serve as anchors for the bridge.
A replacement tooth (the missing tooth) is attached to the crowns that cover the anchor teeth.
As with crowns, you have a choice of materials for bridges: tooth coloured materials, gold or metal alloys.
How are Crowns and Bridges Made?
The dentist will 'file Down' or reduce your tooth/ teeth in size, take a mould so the lab technician can make your crown or bridge. A temporary crown or bridge will be put in place to cover the prepared tooth while the permanent crown or bridge is being made. When the permanent crown or bridge is ready, the temporary crown or bridge is removed, and the new crown or bridge is cemented over your prepared tooth or teeth.
How long do Crowns and Bridges last?
While crowns and bridges can last a lifetime, they do sometimes come loose or fall out. The most important step you can take to ensure the longevity of your crown or bridge is to practice good oral hygiene. A bridge can lose its support if the teeth or bone holding it in place are damaged by dental disease. Keep your gums and teeth healthy by brushing with fluoride toothpaste twice a day and flossing daily. Also see your dentist and hygienist regularly for checkups and professional cleanings.
To prevent damage to your new crown or bridge, avoid chewing hard foods, ice or other hard objects.