As we get older, so do our teeth. Decay, trauma, fillings, or even the way we chew can make our teeth wear down. You may need a crown or a bridge to rectify this situation.
What Is a Crown?
Dental crowns are placed over a weakened tooth to help the tooth from breaking or wearing down even more. Crowns are also used to restore stained or misshaped teeth as well as to shelter a tooth that has had a root canal.
What Is a Bridge?
A bridge is placed in your mouth to substitute a missing tooth. It is fixed or cemented on the foundation tooth, and in some cases, implants are placed next to a missing tooth. Bridges enhance your chewing ability and are a tremendous cosmetic advantage.
The Lifespan of Bridges and Crowns
It’s important to note though that a crown or bridge may not last forever. It may need to be replaced if it has become faulty or worn down. The lifespan of your crown or bridge is based upon the resources used to create it, how well you maintain your oral hygiene, the food and drinks you consume, as well as the condition of the surrounding teeth and gums. It is imperative that you continue to floss and brush your teeth properly.
What to Expect
If you need a crown or a bridge, it will likely take a few visits to your dentist to complete this treatment.
For your first visit, the doctor will numb the area around the tooth to help with any discomfort. Then your dentist will use a dental instrument to form and prep the tooth. Sometimes an additional procedure may need to be completed to ensure a good fit for the bridge or crown. This procedure is called a buildup.
A mold of the tooth will be taken, and a temporary crown or bridge placed to guard the prepped tooth. The mold will be sent to a dental laboratory where a customized bridge or crown will be made just for you. Once the dental office receives your crown or bridge from the lab, if you are satisfied with the shape, color, and fit, it will be permanently cemented on your second visit.
If the bridge or crown received from the laboratory does not fit as well as you would like, another mold will be taken and sent to the lab for another crown or bridge to ensure a proper fit.
Using Crowns and Bridges
Sometimes the crown or bridge may feel too high when you bite down. If you feel some discomfort, reach out to your dentist to have your crown or bridge adjusted.
About Dr. Patrick Williams:
Dr. Patrick Williams is a general dentist with a remarkably diverse skillset. A graduate of the University of Florida College of Dentistry, he has never stopped learning throughout 17 years of practice. Dr. Williams is certified in cutting-edge dental technologies, maintaining fellowships in such prestigious organizations as the Academy of General Dentistry and the International Congress of Oral Implantologists, among others.
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