Restorative Dental Care

Dental crowns and most dental bridges are fixed prosthetic devices that mimic and replace missing teeth. Unlike removable devices that you can take out and clean daily, such as dentures, crowns and bridges are cemented onto existing teeth or implants, and they can only be removed by a dentist.

A dental crown is used to entirely cover or “cap” a damaged tooth. Besides strengthening a damaged tooth, a crown can be used to improve its appearance, shape, or alignment. A crown can also be placed on top of an implant to provide a tooth-like shape and structure for enhanced functionality.

Types of Dental Crowns

  1. Porcelain or ceramic. These crowns can be matched to the color of your natural teeth.
  2. Gold and metal alloys, acrylic, and ceramic. These alloys are generally stronger than porcelain and may be recommended for back teeth.
  3. Porcelain bonded to a metal shell. These crowns are often used for back teeth because they are both strong and attractive.

When a Crown is Needed

Dental crowns are ideal for the following applications:

  • Replacing a large filling when there isn’t enough tooth remaining
  • Protecting a weak tooth from fracturing
  • Restoring a fractured tooth
  • Attaching a bridge
  • Covering a dental implant
  • Covering a discolored or poorly shaped tooth
  • Covering a tooth that has had a root canal treatment

A bridge may be recommended if you’re missing one or more teeth. Gaps left by missing teeth eventually cause the remaining teeth to rotate or shift into the empty spaces, resulting in a bad bite. The imbalance caused by missing teeth can also lead to gum disease and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders. Bridges are cemented to the natural teeth or implants surrounding the empty space.

Types of Dental Bridges

As with dental crowns, you have a choice of materials for dental bridges. We can help you decide which to use, and often consider the location of the missing tooth (or teeth), its function, aesthetic considerations, and cost. Porcelain or ceramic bridges can be matched to the color of your natural teeth.