Crowns — sometimes called “caps” — are protective restorations that fit over damaged teeth. They can also be affixed on top of dental implants for single tooth replacement.
Do I Need a Crown?
If your tooth is too damaged to be repaired with a filling, then you’ll need a dental crown. Dr. Bahar Esmaili frequently recommends crowns for our Boulder patients with
• Severe tooth decay
• Cracked teeth
• Single dental implants
• Recent root canal therapy
• Aggressive tooth wear
• Atypical/abnormal enamel development
Types of Dental Bridges
Bridges are used to fill in the gap left by a missing tooth. They’re multi-tooth restorations that look like several crowns connected side-by-side. A bridge is usually made from ceramic or porcelain over a metal base.
To qualify for a bridge, you’ll need to have two healthy teeth on either side of the open space to support it. Bridges can also be affixed on top of a pair of dental implants.
Do I Need a Dental Bridge?
If you have a missing tooth you should replace it as quickly as possible. Otherwise your neighboring (and opposing) teeth can start to drift out of alignment. Over time, this can lead to a chain-reaction throughout your mouth.
Missing teeth also contribute to abnormal wear, because you’re chewing in other areas of your mouth. Not only will uneven biting damage your teeth, it can also contribute to TMJ disorder.
If you’re too embarrassed to smile because of tooth loss, our ceramic bridges can restore your bite back to a functional and beautiful accessory!
Caring for Your New Crown/Bridge
Although bridges and crowns can’t get cavities, the tooth underneath them still can. That’s why it’s important to clean around the edges of your restoration each day with a toothbrush and floss. Proper flossing won’t tug your restoration off; just be gentle. If it feels tight, slide it through the side of your teeth instead of forcing it upwards.
Since bridges can be a bit more challenging to clean, you may want to consider investing in a water flosser. These oral hygiene aids are effective and easy to use at the sink or in your shower.
What to Expect
When you get a fixed restoration like a crown or bridge, you’ll want to plan on making two trips to our office about two weeks apart. At the first visit, Dr. Esmaili will numb and prep your supporting teeth then take an impression. A mold of your bite is sent to our lab, where the permanent crown or bridge is handcrafted.
You’ll wear a temporary until the final design is ready. When it is, we’ll see you back to try it in, make any necessary adjustments, then cement it permanently onto your tooth.