Quality crowns and bridges at Forestview Family Dentistry, located in Maple Grove, MN.
What is a crown?
There are basically three types of crowns, those made of gold, ceramic crowns and ceramic-veneered gold crowns. Gold and metal-ceramic crowns are extremely durable and are normally used in molars, where the forces from chewing and grinding are most prevalent. All ceramic crowns are used for front and back teeth. They best resemble the natural tooth color.
Why might I need a crown?
Grinding your teeth, an improper bite, age, fillings and tooth decay can all be contributing factors in the wearing down, cracking or breakage of your teeth. Dental crowns cover the entire visible surface of your affected tooth and add strength, durability and tooth stability.
How are crowns attached to your teeth?
Your dentist will make an impression of the tooth and a dental laboratory will create the crown. You will typically leave the office with a temporary crown to wear while the permanent crown is being fabricated – this takes about two weeks. The permanent crown is then cemented onto your tooth. Typically, only two visits are required for this type of procedure. Often, a preliminary restoration of your tooth may be needed before a crown can be placed. To stabilize your tooth, a buildup may first be put in place prior to placing a crown due to the loss of original tooth structure.
What is a bridge?
A dental bridge is a false tooth, known as a pontic, which is fused between two porcelain crowns to fill in the area left by a missing tooth. This is known as a fixed bridge. This procedure is used to replace one or more missing teeth. Fixed bridges cannot be taken out of your mouth as you might do with removable partial dentures. There are three types of bridges and your dentist will discuss which one is right for you:
Why might I need a bridge?
Bridges are used to replace one or more teeth and can reduce your risk of gum disease, help correct some bite issues and even improve your speech. Bridges require your commitment to serious oral hygiene, but will last as many as ten years or more.
What is the bridging procedure like?
Your dentist will prepare your teeth on either side of the space for the false tooth. You will be given a mild anesthetic to numb the area, and your dentist will remove an area of each abutment (teeth on either side of the space) to accommodate for the thickness of the crown.
The dentist will then take an impression, which will serve as the model from which the bridge, false tooth and crowns will be fabricated by a dental laboratory. A temporary bridge will be placed for you to wear while your bridge is being fabricated until your next visit. This temporary bridge will serve to protect your teeth and gums.
Your dentist may have you use a flipper appliance. A flipper is a false tooth to temporarily take the place of a missing tooth before the permanent bridge is placed. A flipper can be attached via either a wire or a plastic piece that fits in the roof of your mouth. Flippers are meant to be a temporary solution while awaiting the permanent bridge.
On your second appointment, the temporary bridge will be removed. Your new permanent bridge will be fitted, checked and adjusted for any bite discrepancies. Your new bridge will then be cemented to your teeth.