Aliso Viejo Family Dental Group

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Crown / Dental Bridges

If you damage one or more of your teeth you should visit dentist right away to talk about possible solutions. Several dental restorations are available, and you might be wondering which one is best for you. You might also have questions regarding the differences between a dental crown and a dental bridge. Dental crowns and most bridges are fixed prosthetic devices. dentists cement them onto existing teeth or implants, and if replacements are required, only a dentist can remove them. This characteristic distinguishes them from dentures and other removable options like dentures, which must be removed and cleaned daily.

Dental Crowns 


Dental Crowns

A crown is a tooth shaped cap that is fixed over the tooth to resize and reshape and also improve the appearance of the teeth. Dental crowns are a secure way to fill gaps and help restore your smile if you have missing or damaged teeth. A crown can also help you bite and chew better, which can positively impact other systems in your body, such as a your digestive system.

procedure for Dental Crowns are as follows:

 Taking an Impression

On your first visit, the dentist or prosthodontist takes an impression of your upper and lower teeth to make a permanent record of their appearance and how they fit together when your jaws are closed (known as “occlusion”). To make an accurate reproduction of your upper and lower teeth, a jaw-shaped tray is filled with a soft gel-like material, pushed onto your teeth and held in place to set for three to five minutes.

Preparation for a Crown

After the area is numbed with a local anaesthetic, the tooth is shaped using a drill, making it smaller by one to two millimitres. After shaping, another impression is taken to record changes to the prepared tooth.
The impressions are sent to a dental technician who makes the crown according to specifications provided by the dentist or prosthodontist.

To protect the prepared tooth, a temporary crown is attached to the reshaped tooth with temporary cement. As a temporary crown is not as strong as the final crown, you should chew on the opposite side of the mouth and avoid sticky or hard foods.

At the second appointment, the temporary crown is removed. The new crown is placed over the reshaped tooth to check that shape and colour match properly. If they do, the crown is cemented to the tooth with dental cement. Dental cement usually sets in less than one hour and reaches full strength in 24 hours.

After fitting, the crown should feel comfortable and natural in your mouth. When testing your occlusion, your dentist or prosthodontist relies partly on what you say about the feel of your bite, so you should mention any uncomfortable or strange sensations. Minor adjustments are often needed to achieve comfort.

Bridges


Bridges

A dental bridge is one method to fill a gap created by a missing tooth (or teeth). Dental bridge or pontic is a custom-made false tooth or teeth, that is permanently placed between two healthy teeth, filling in the area left by a missing tooth or teeth. The bridge is held in place by crowns placed on the healthy teeth on each side of space to be filled. Procedure for dental bridges are as follows:

 Taking an Impression

On your first visit, the dentist or prosthodontist takes an impression of your upper and lower teeth to make a permanent record of their appearance and how they fit together when your jaws are closed (known as “occlusion”). To make an accurate reproduction of your upper and lower teeth, a jaw-shaped tray is filled with a soft gel-like material, pushed onto your teeth and held in place to set for three to five minutes.

Preparation for a Bridge

The steps in preparing and fitting a bridge are similar to those for a crown. The teeth on either side of the gap are shaped by drilling.
These teeth are fitted with crowns, which serve as anchors for the replacement tooth that is attached to the framework of the adjacent crowns. The whole piece is then cemented firmly in place.

How Long Will A Crown and Bridge Last?


The exact lifespan of any restoration will depend on how well you take care of it. As a general rule, they last between 7-15 years but longer periods are certainly possible with outstanding oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups.

Some people having Crowns with black, darkened lines in between their gums and teeth. Are they cause by Crown or Bridges? 


The newer all porcelain crowns are an esthetic improvement over older, porcelain fused to metal crowns as if the gumline would recede, the older crowns often showed a metal edge to the crown that originally was hidden from view. Since all porcelain crowns have no metal, no markings are evident if the gum line recedes.

Crown and bridge care


Once your crown or bridge is fitted, it’s important to maintain a regular and effective routine of oral hygiene. Brush and floss two to three times a day, taking extra care to floss around your crown. This will help avoid decay where the crown and the tooth join. Avoid sticky foods such as toffee and lollies, and do not use your teeth inappropriately – chewing pens, crunching ice, gnawing fingernails, etc.

A dental floss threader, which looks like a small bendy brush, can be used to clean under your bridge. There are also water jets on the market that will help keep your bridge clean.

Whether you have a crown or a bridge, the most important thing is to regularly visit your dentist for a checkup and clean. This way problems can be detected early, allowing them to be corrected before they become painful and expensive.

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Dr. Tafreshi

is a Specialist in Cosmetic Dentistry

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