Crowns and bridges are dental devices that restore damaged or missing teeth. In this way, they can improve your oral health and protect your teeth against additional damage. While crowns and bridges often go hand in hand, they do serve different functions.
A dental crown is a custom cap shaped like a tooth that covers the entire visible portion of your tooth. The purpose of a crown is to hide imperfections, like cracked or broken teeth, while restoring a tooth’s shape, size, and function. By restoring a damaged tooth with a crown, Dr. Albelais can also improve your bite — the way your teeth fit together.
A dental bridge is an appliance that replaces one or more missing teeth. The device contains one or more pontics (artificial teeth) surrounded by supportive abutments (anchoring teeth). The anchoring teeth are located on each side of your pontic. Crowns cover and protect these teeth for additional support.
Dr. Albelais recommends crowns and bridges to treat a wide range of common dental concerns, such as:
A crown can also help protect a weak tooth after root canal treatment. Placing a crown seals out plaque and bacteria that might otherwise damage the tooth.
Planning, creating, and placing crowns and bridges takes several weeks and at least two visits to Dr. Albelais’ office. During the first appointment, Dr. Albelais prepares your teeth for crowns by filing and reshaping them. This helps make room for the crowns and ensures they blend in seamlessly with the rest of your teeth.
After preparing your teeth, Dr. Albelais takes a series of impressions that serve as models to create your new restorations, which may include crowns alone or crowns and artificial teeth. It takes about 2-3 weeks to create custom crowns and bridges, so you must protect your teeth with temporary restorations in the meantime.
When you return to the office, Dr. Albelais replaces your temporary restorations with your permanent appliances. He then adjusts the restorations for the right fit and feel before cementing them in place.
To learn more about how crowns and bridges can restore your smile, call Albelais Dental Corporation or schedule an appointment online today.