Crowns and Bridges
Why Get Crowns or Bridges?
When one or more teeth are missing or must be removed, a bridge is often necessary. A crown is a tooth-shaped cap that is placed over a tooth to restore its size, shape and strength. Oftentimes, a tooth must be crowned so that a bridge can be securely attached to it.
What Are the Reasons to Get a Tooth Crowned?
Children — Sometimes, a child’s tooth has been damaged by decay to the point that the tooth cannot support a filling. In some situations, a child can’t maintain daily oral hygiene or would require general anesthesia to cooperate with the requirements of proper dental care. Dr. Karas consults with his patients to help them decide if their child’s teeth need to be crowned to avoid damaging decay.
Adults — At times, an adult needs one or more teeth crowned because they have become weak (often from decay) and must be protected from breaking. Other reasons adults often need teeth crowned include:
- To restore a tooth that has been worn down or broken
- To cover and support a tooth with an unusually large filling or when not much tooth is left
- To provide an anchor for a bridge
- To cover an implant
- To cover severely discolored or misshapen teeth
- What Does a Dental Bridge Do?
A dental bridge does just that — bridge a gap that has been caused by one or more missing teeth. A bridge requires two or more crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap. Two or more false teeth span that gap. A bridge can be made from porcelain, gold, alloys, or a combination of these materials. A bridge is supported by natural teeth or implants.
Depending on the material a bridge is made of, it can be quite durable. The average bridge has a lifespan of 10 years, but they can often last up to 15 years and longer. Rather than having difficulty speaking clearly, patients find that their speech is more natural with a bridge.