A crown is a tooth-shaped cap that completely covers a tooth or dental implant. The are required when a cavity threatens the health of the tooth, or to improve appearance of the tooth. Most crowns are made of a hard, white material, such as ceramic, to help them look natural, and are bonded with the tooth with dental cement.
There are many reasons why a dentist may suggest a crown, some of them are:
- To restore an already broken tooth or a tooth that has been severely worn down
- To cover and support a tooth with a large filling when there isn’t a lot of tooth left
- To hold a dental bridge in place
- To cover misshapened or severely discolored teeth
How Long Do Dental Crowns Last?
On average, dental crowns last between 10 to 15 years, and can last a lifetime with proper care.
Does a Crowned Tooth Require Special Care?
While a crowned tooth does not require any special care, remember that simply because a tooth is crowned does not mean the tooth is protected from decay or gum disease. Therefore, you should continue to follow good oral hygiene practices.
A dental bridge is used to replace or “bridge” over a missing tooth by joining an artificial tooth permanently to adjacent teeth.
After you lose a tooth, your dentist may suggest that you get a bridge. It can keep your other teeth from moving out of place. Once the bridge is placed, it works just like a normal tooth.
How are Crowns and Bridges Made?
Before a crown or a bridge can be made, the tooth, or teeth, have to be reduced in size so that the crown or bridge will fit over it properly. After reducing the tooth, your dentist will take a dental impression of a prepared tooth to get an exact mold for the crown or bridge, which is fabricated outside the mouth. Using the impression, a dental lab then makes your crown or bridge. A temporary crown or bridge may be placed while the permanent crown or bridge is being fabricated. When the permanent crown or bridge is ready, the temporary crown or bridge is removed, and the permanent crown or bridge is cemented over your tooth.