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Dental Crowns and Bridges (Dental Caps)
Crowns and bridges are fixed prosthetic devices that are cemented onto your teeth. Both are shaped to look and feel the same as your natural teeth and may require several dental surgery visits to complete. Once in place, they can only be removed by your dentist.
A crown is a cap that is used to cover a damaged tooth. Along with completely covering and strengthening damaged teeth, crowns can be used to improve the appearance, shape or alignment of teeth. If you have a dental implant, your dentist will place a crown on top to provide a tooth-like shap and structure for function.
A bridge is used to replace one or more missing teeth and is constructed to span the spaces where you have missing teeth. They are either cemented to your natural teeth that surround the empty space, called abutments, or they are mounted onto dental implants. Bridges help prevent remaining teeth from rotating or shifting into the empty space. If left untreated, the imbalance caused by missing teeth can result in a bite which may lead to further decay or gum disease and can trigger teeth grinding.
What are they made of?
Crowns and bridges composed of procelain and ceramic can be designed to match the colour of your teeth to ensure they blend effortlessly with your natural teeth colour. Other safe and durable materials used to make crowns and bridges include gold and porcelai fused to metal. Metals are generally stronger than porcelain and are often used for back teeth but porcelain fused to metal can be beneficial having both strength and improved appearance. Your d-spa dentist will advise you on which materials you should consider based on the location of your damaged or missing teeth, their function, aesthetic considerations and cost.
Crowns and Bridges should last for many years with research suggesting approximately 12 years. Regular dental check-ups and preventive care appointments are essential and your hygienist will show you how to care for your bridges and crowns.
Who is suitable for the procedure?
Our d-spa dentist may recommend the placement of a crown or bridge to you if you have a :
Chipped tooth: Depending on the size of the chip, your dentist can smooth or cosmetically correct it and a filling could be a good option to ask your dentist about. However, if a large amount of tooth tissue ios lost, a crown may be advisable.
Cracked or fractured tooth: Cracked or fractured teeth should be repaired as soon as possible to prevent further damage. If a crack affects the tooth enamel and the dentine, a crown is frequently the best treatment. However, a root canal, filling or tooth extraction may be necessary depending on the extent and direction of the crack or fracture.
Missing permanent tooth: If your tooth has been accidentally knocked out by dental injury, it's critical to keep it mosit or re-implant it in the socket and see your dentist immediately. However, if your tooth is permanently lost, it should be replaced as soon as possible to help avoid developing an improper bite which can lead to further disease and pain.
Significant tooth decay: Fillings are the most common treatment for cavaties in adults. However, if you need a large restoration and there isn't enough of your natural tooth remaining, your dentist may recommend a crown.
The procedure usually involves 2 visits:
1st visit: Before a crown or bridge can be made, our team will reduce the size of your affected teeth so that the prosthetic can fit over them properly. Our team will take an impression of your teeth to ensure that the crown or bridge is an exact replica and if using porcelain or ceramic, our team will determine its correct shade to match the natural colour of your teeth.
2nd visit: This visit will take place 2-3 weeks after your initial appointment. There is no drilling needed in the visit as the temporary crown is removed and the permanent crown is cemented on with a dental bonding agent.
As with any dental or medical treatment, crown and bridge work has associated risks. Infection may affect the teeth in two places: in the soft tissue inside the tooth, called the pulp or in the gums around the base of the teeth. Whenever enamel is removed, there is a small risk the underlying pulp may die and become infected. If this occurs, the tooth may need root canal therapy.
A correctly fitted dental bridge should feel secure. A crown may be dislodged by a strong force, an accident or blow to the face. If this happens, the crown can be cleaned, disinfected and re-bonded into place. If the size of a tooth feels it has changed even slightly when biting, please advise your dentist as minor adjustments may be required.
For further information, please do not hesitate to contact our warm and friendly staff at one of our three practices across the CBD (Collins Street) and South Yarra (Toorak Road).