Bridges & Crowns

When significant amounts of coronal tooth structure is lost due to dental decay or trauma such as a large chip or break, stomach purchase a crown is often the best way to save a tooth and strengthen it. A crown (also known as a cap) fits over the existing natural tooth and replaces the natural crown, the part of the tooth seen above the gums.

Bridges replace one or more missing teeth. They consist of an artificial tooth anchored to the natural teeth on each side of the gap. You can also ask your dentist about implants, which are another way of replacing missing teeth.

Crowns and bridges are usually made of porcelain and gold alloy. Porcelain is strong and stain resistant and can be made to match the colour of your natural teeth. Gold alloy is used for its strength, hardness and durability. Both porcelain and gold alloy are well tolerated by gum and cheek tissue, allergic reactions are rare.
Missing teeth should be replaced for the following reasons:

  • To improve your appearance especially towards the front
  • To prevent stresses causing damage to other teeth
  • To prevent the teeth near the gap shifting
  • To maintain the natural bite
  • To maintain the natural bite

All general practitioner dentists are qualified to fit crowns and bridges. Appropriate treatment is based on your dental and medical history, x-ray examinations of your teeth and jaws, and an oral examination. Appointment times will vary especially in the event that a tooth may need a root canal filling and perhaps a post, before crown or bridge treatment.

Crowns and bridges should last for many years; however there is no lifetime guarantee. As with natural teeth, it depends on good dental hygiene and oral health. Therefore, regular dental check ups are advisable. Crowns and bridges require flossing and brushing, with extra attention around the margins where decay is more likely. Special devices include floss threaders and “superfloss” is available for cleaning under the bridge.

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