When a tooth has severe damage or decay and a lot of crown structure has been lost, the dentist will help you choose the best option to repair that tooth. Crowns include reduction of all surfaces of a tooth so a cap can be placed on top of the tooth, acting like a natural tooth. Bridges are a similar treatment to crowns, except they are used when a tooth is missing, and the teeth next to the space are crowned. Veneers are used for more cosmetic purposes and include the reduction of only 1 or 2 surfaces of a tooth, depending on the case. Some veneers do not include any reduction at all. All three treatments options restore the function and appearance of the original natural dentition.
A crown is basically the placement of a cap on top of a tooth. appropriate reductions to all surfaces of the tooth must be made in order to custom fit the crown on top. A crown will restore the appearance and function of a natural tooth. The main reason to prepare a crown include extensive loss of tooth structure due to decay or fracture.
Impression for the fabrication of temporary crown
Reduction of all surfaces of the tooth
Impression of the prepared tooth and bite registration
Creation and placement of temporary crown
Placement of final crown 2 weeks after original appointment
Patient came in with a fractured front tooth and a metal post sticking out. Patient mentioned that the post was always hurting his lip. Patient also mentioned that he had a hard time smiling due to the condition of his front teeth. Patient was explained that due to the severity of tooth structure loss, it would be ideal to place a crown on the tooth and a small filling on the tooth next to it to compliment the smile. Patient quickly agreed to the treatment plan. After a quick preparation and final impression, patient received his crown and filling and was able to walk out of the office smiling.
Bridges are used to replace missing teeth. The same procedure as for a crown is done to the teeth on both sides of the missing space. Adjacent teeth are prepared and the the bridge is placed on top with a porcelain tooth covering the empty space in between. Bridges are an alternative to implants, which is now the golden standard of care. Bridges are better suited when neighboring teeth have decay or large restorations. Bridges are not to be used when a lot of teeth are missing.
Types of Bridges:
Traditional — Crowns are placed on both sides of the missing tooth
Cantilever — Crown is placed on top of a single tooth next to the missing tooth