Common Restorations to Protect the Health of Your Smile
Dental crowns and bridges are common restorations for missing or damaged teeth—over 15 million Americans have them. When your teeth are damaged, it is important to protect them from further harm and to restore function. Dental crowns are common restorations used to cap a damaged tooth to prevent further harm. For those with a gap of multiple missing teeth, a dental bridge is a common replacement option. Dr. Perez is experienced at restoring your smile with lifelike and functional dental crowns and bridges so you can continue to use your teeth like normal.
A dental crown is a restoration piece that covers a damaged tooth or dental implants in order to return appearance and functionality. When getting a dental crown, we will reshape your damaged tooth to make space for the crown to fit comfortably. An impression of your mouth is taken to help us construct the crown and you are fitted with a temporary crown while your final piece is constructed. Our crowns are made of durable, high quality porcelain or composite resin, which will allow you to eat the foods you love again without worry of chipping or cracking.
A dental crown is a tooth-shaped “cap” that fits snuggly over a tooth, completely covering it. Usually a crown is required to restore the size, shape, strength, or appearance of a tooth. Crowns fix these issues by completely encasing the visible portion of the tooth that lies above the gumline.
Dental crowns are used to restore the teeth for multiple common procedures, including things such as:
- Dental implants
- Root canals
- Chipped, cracked or fractured teeth
- Misshapen or discolored teeth
Preparing a tooth for a crown usually takes two office visits. The first visit will be to prepare the tooth for the crown. During this first appointment, the doctor will take x-rays to ensure that the root of the tooth and surrounding bone are healthy enough to support a dental crown. If the teeth have significant decay then a root canal may be required before a crown can be placed.
Before the procedure begins, the doctor will numb your tooth and surrounding gum tissue. The tooth receiving the crown will be filed down along the chewing surface and sides to make room for the crown. The amount your tooth will be filed depends on the type of crown used and your particular case. After the tooth has been reshaped, an impression of the tooth will be made. This impression will be used to create your unique crown. Manufacturing of the crown usually takes 2-3 weeks. During your second visit, the crown will be permanently cemented in place.
Dental Bridges (Fixed Partial Denture)
A bridge, or a fixed partial denture, is designed to literally bridge the gap between one or more missing teeth. A bridge is made up of two crowns fused on one side to one or more false teeth. The crowns are then attached to the teeth on either side of the gap in the patient’s teeth. Unlike removable partial dentures, bridges cannot be removed. Bridges are designed to restore the aesthetics of your smile and the functionality of it, allowing you to eat and speak properly. Bridges help maintain the shape of your face so that cheeks do not sink where teeth are missing. Bridges can help distribute bite forces by replacing missing teeth. And they can prevent teeth from drifting out of position.
Like crowns, placing a bridge requires two office visits. During the first visit, the teeth that serve as abutments (the teeth on either side of the missing tooth) are prepared for their crown. The enamel on each tooth is removed to allow room for the crowns. After the tooth has been reshaped, an impression of the area will be made. These impressions are used to manufacture the bridge and crowns. Your doctor may make a temporary bridge for you to wear in order to protect the exposed teeth and gums while your bridge is being made. Manufacturing the bridge usually takes 2-3 weeks. During your second office visit, the temporary bridge will be removed and your permanent bridge will be fitted and cemented in place. You may be required to come in for multiple follow up visits to ensure that the fit and bite of the bridge is correct.