A crown (or “cap”) is a type of dental restoration that can be used to rebuild a single tooth that has been damaged or that can be used to improve the appearance of a single tooth. A crown can also be attached to an implant for the purpose of replacing a single missing tooth.
Dental crowns are made entirely from ceramic, entirely from metal (usually gold), or from a combination of metal and ceramic. Each has slightly different properties that can affect appearance, durability, and cost.
The procedure for dental crowns involves numbing the area, filing down and shaping the remaining tooth, and then capturing an image of the shaped tooth with either conventional impression “goop” or with an intra-oral digital scanner. That image is then used to create a stone model of your tooth, upon which the crown can be designed and fabricated. Despite the advances in technology, this process usually takes 2 visits to ensure the ideal fit and appearance of your dental crown.
A “bridge” is another type of dental restoration that is used primarily to replace a missing tooth by bridging across the missing space and attaching to the teeth next to it. It is also particularly useful if the adjacent teeth are damaged as well. Bridges can also be attached to implants for the purpose of replacing 3-4 missing teeth.
The procedures for a bridge are fairly similar to those of dental crowns. In fact, a bridge looks much like 3-4 crowns all stuck together. However, there are a few important differences. Perhaps the most important one is that a bridge requires more attention during oral hygiene because there is a little space under the middle unit that can collect food and predispose the area to decay. Since they replace several teeth, and not just one, another important difference with bridges is that they require particular attention to material selection and design to prevent mechanical complications in the long run.
Crown and Bridge Specialist?
As a prosthodontist, Dr. Limmer is an expert in the materials, the design principles, the fabrication methods, and the clinical procedures involved with using crowns and bridges to improve the look, function, and longevity of your smile. His attention to both the technical detail as well as to patient concerns will ensure both a beautiful result and a great dental experience.