Crowns & Bridges
Crowns and Bridges Procedures
A fixed dental bridge is a popular method of replacing missing teeth. These bridges are a non-removable dental appliance used to “bridge” a gap caused from one or more missing teeth. There are numerous bridge options available, but the most popular is made of porcelain and fused to metal. It is important to discuss the different types of bridges to make sure you select the best one for your lifestyle and needs.
Multiple appointments are usually required to prepare and place a patients’ new bridge. Your dentist will ensure your teeth and surrounding gums are numb before beginning the procedure. The teeth on either side of the gap will need to be slightly sanded down to allow for a crown to fit over them. A dental impression will then be taken and sent to a laboratory for the permanent bridge to be made. Before leaving a temporary bridge will be placed and used until your next appointment. During your second appointment the permanent bridge will be affixed to the abutment teeth (anchoring teeth) using a dental cement to ensure they will stay in place. Before the appointment is finished your dentist will check to make sure the permanent bridge is fitting correctly and make any necessary adjustments.
Maintaining proper oral hygiene is the best way to care for your new bridge. Always brush with an ADA approved toothpaste and continue to floss between all teeth. You will also need to use floss threaders to floss underneath your bridge, this will help to keep your gum healthy in between your regular dental visits. During your routine dental visits your crown will be checked for any signs of wear and tear.
Same Day Crowns (CEREC)
CEREC same-day crowns have beautifully merged traditional dentistry with modern technology. A crown is used as a “cap” over a selected tooth for a variety of reasons including, holding a cracked tooth together, restoring the appearance of a discolored tooth, or strengthen a weakened tooth. CEREC is an acronym for Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics (aka CERamic REConstruction). Same-day crowns allowing patients to come into the office once and leave with a completed restorative procedure, instead of needing to make a couple appointments and having to wait for their lab created crown to be delivered. Many patients are worried about the price associated with CEREC crowns but are pleasantly surprised to learn that they are a cost-effective option equivalent in price to lab created crowns.
CEREC crowns are made using CAD CAM technology allowing a single appointment to go from prepping a tooth to adhering the final crown on with no need for extra visits. The process is quick and easy and takes about two hours from start to finish. Using a specialized intra-oral camera numerous 3D images of your tooth is taken eliminating the need for uncomfortable impressions/molds to be made. The images are then uploaded onto a computer where minor tweaks and edits are made to ensure a comfortable fit is made. Once your dentist is happy with the designed crown it will then be sent to a machine to be carved from a block of ceramic. Once the crown is it is ready to be adhered to the prepped tooth.
Unlike traditional crowns that only last an average of ten years, CEREC crowns, when proper oral hygiene is followed, can last on average eighteen years.