A crown is a custom-made covering that fits over an original tooth that is either decayed, damaged or cracked. Though crowns can be made from a variety of materials, our office uses porcelain crowns to provide our patients with the most natural appearance.
The treatment plan for a patient receiving a crown involves:
- Numbing the tooth to remove the decay in or around it
- Re-sculpting the tooth to provide an ideal fit for the crown
- Making an impression of your teeth in order to create a custom-made crown (usually takes two to three weeks)
- Making a temporary crown out of acrylic resin and fitting it onto the tooth during the interim period when the custom-made crown is being created
- Applying the custom-made crown (when received from the lab) by removing the temporary crown and fitting the custom-made one onto the tooth
- After ensuring that the crown has the proper look and fit, the dentist cements it into place
This process generally consists of a minimum of two to three visits over a three to four week period. Once the procedure is completed, proper dental hygiene, including daily brushing and flossing, is required to maintain healthy, bacteria-free teeth, gums and crowns. This helps in the prevention of gum disease. Given proper care, your crowns can last a lifetime.
Porcelain veneers are thin, semi-translucent “shells” typically attached to your front teeth. They are customized from porcelain material that is bonded to your teeth. Porcelain veneers are a great alternative to otherwise painful dental procedures to improve the appearance of your smile.
Common problems that porcelain veneers are used for:
- Spaces between the teeth
- Broken or chipped teeth
- Unsightly, stained or discolored teeth
- Permanently stained or discolored teeth
- Crooked or misshapen teeth
Porcelain veneers are a great aesthetic solution to your smile that may even help you avoid orthodontic treatment. Subtle changes to your smile can be achieved with veneers, and in most cases, veneer application is completed in only two office visits.
A bridge is a dental device that fills a space the tooth previously occupied. A bridge may be necessary to prevent:
- Shifting of the teeth that can lead to bite problems (occlusion) and/or jaw problems and resultant periodontal disease
- Compromising integrity of existing teeth and help maintain a healthy, vibrant smile
There are three main types of bridges:
- A Fixed bridge is the most popular and consists of a filler tooth that is attached to two crowns, which fit over the existing teeth and hold the bridge in place
- The “Maryland” bridge is commonly used to replace missing front teeth and consists of a filler that is attached to metal bands that are bonded to the abutment teeth. The metal bands consist of a white-colored composite resin that matches existing tooth color
- The Cantilever bridge is often used when there are teeth on only one side of the span. A typical three-unit cantilever bridge consists of two crowned teeth positioned next to each other on the same side of the missing tooth space. The filler tooth is then connected to the two crowned teeth, which extend into the missing tooth space or end