Damaged and missing teeth are not only cosmetic problems, but they can also spell trouble for your oral health. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, the average adult ages 20-64 have fewer than 25 remaining teeth. Fortunately, losing or breaking a tooth does not have to mean living with a gaping hole or unsightly damage. Crowns and bridges are one of the simplest ways of restoring your smile and bringing back functionality to your teeth.
Crowns are the most common restorative dental procedure performed in the U.S., with millions of them placed every year. Crowns are surface-level restorations that are custom-made to mimic the appearance and function of a natural tooth. They are also incredibly versatile in that they can be used in conjunction with either a natural tooth or a dental implant.
There are many reasons a person might need a crown, such as:
- To restore a tooth following a root canal
- To protect a fracture or broken tooth
- To cap and complete a dental implant
- To improve the appearance of a person’s smile
- To help anchor a dental bridge
Because crowns are personalized according to a patient’s needs, their color and shape can be modified to provide a more natural appearance. For many, crowns can be a practical solution to severe discoloration and other cosmetic issues that remain despite other treatment options, such as whitening. Not to mention, the robust composition of the tooth-colored crowns provided by our office make them long-lasting and capable of withstanding many decades of natural wear and tear.
A bridge may be right for you if you are missing one or more consecutive teeth. Unlike crowns, which are designed to restore individual teeth in conjunction with a natural tooth or artificial implant, bridges are dental prosthetics fabricated to replace several missing teeth in a row along the surface of the gums. A bridge is permanently affixed to crowns attached to ‘anchor’ teeth on either side of the bridge. These teeth may be natural teeth, or they may be dental implants. In most cases, the placement of a bridge occurs in just two office visits.
Bridges provide a long-term tooth replacement solution for patients who desire the appearance of a full smile without the cost of individual implants. A well-placed bridge helps prevent remaining teeth from moving and can also restore the ability to eat and speak with minimal limitation.