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What are dental crowns and what purpose do they serve?
Dental crowns, commonly known as caps, are fixed prosthesis meant to cover and protect structurally compromised teeth. Crowns protect teeth from further damage, while ensuring complete aesthetic and functional restoration. A tooth may require a crown in the following cases:
Following root canal therapy
Structural damage due to wear
Aesthetic restoration of shape/size discrepancies
Following a large sized filling
Permanently stained tooth
Previous colored restorations
For a crown to be fixed, the natural tooth must be trimmed down slightly. An impression of this tooth is then taken, based on which the prosthesis is fabricated using materials like porcelain, metal, Zirconia, Gold or porcelain-fused-to-metal. The cap is then fitted on to the tooth using a dental cement.
What are bridges and how do they replace missing teeth?
A dental bridge is a fixed prosthesis that is meant to replace missing teeth in the upper or lower jaw. Unlike implants, bridges only replace the top portion i.e. the crown, of the missing natural teeth. Bridges can be fabricated using porcelain, metal, or PFM (Porcelain Fused to Metal), depending upon the location of the missing sockets in the jaws, and the preference of the patient. Bridges can restore a patient’s ability to chew properly once again, after losing natural teeth from the oral cavity. Here’s how the treatment takes place at the clinic:
Ideally, the two teeth adjacent to an empty socket are trimmed down to a certain shape and size using a handpiece. This is done to accommodate proper seating of the new prosthesis.
Next, an impression of the teeth, socket and surrounding soft tissues is taken
Technicians at the laboratory fabricate a bridge using this impression and send it back to the clinic for trial
A trial of the bridge is done in the patient’s mouth to check for correct fit and bite. It is then fixed in place using a strong dental cement
If you have recently lost a natural tooth, you should consider getting it replaced as soon as possible to avoid complications. At Salado Creek Dental, we offer multiple tooth replacement options. Give us a call today to book an appointment for a consultation.