Crowns and What to Expect
A dental crown is a tooth-shaped cap that is permanently cemented or bonded over an existing tooth covering the visible portion all the way to the gum line. The crown restores the strength of the tooth, reformes the shape, color and size, and improves the appearance of your smile.
Crowns are most often used to hold weak, broken or cracked teeth together to avoid further fracturing. Crowns are also used to support large fillings, attach a bridge, or cover discolored or deformed teeth. Crowns are versatile enough to also be placed over dental implants.
Plan on two dental visits to install a crown. First, Dr. Holloway will need to prepare the tooth or implant by shaping the tooth so that the crown can be fitted over it. Then, she will make an impression of the tooth or teeth and surrounding gums. The impression is sent to a dental lab to create the crown. In the meantime, Doc will fit a temporary crown over the tooth and replace it when the permanent crown is ready. During your second visit, Doc will remove the temporary crown and cement/bond the finished permanent crown onto the tooth.
Crowns generally last about five to ten years, and with good oral hygiene most crowns last even longer. Avoid certain habits such as fingernail biting, chewing ice, and grinding teeth in order to prevent damage to the crown and increase the longevity of your dental work.
The Dental Bridge Treatment
Dental bridges are used to replace one or more missing teeth in your mouth. Dental bridges are fixed. They are cemented on the supporting teeth or in some cases fixed on the dental implant that has been placed next to the missing teeth.
It normally takes two visits at Floss to complete your bridge. On your first visit the supporting teeth are prepared. Supporting teeth are typically the ones on either side of the missing tooth or teeth. This is done to make room for the crowns that will slide over the supporting teeth. These crowns also serve as holders for the missing tooth's replacement.
Next, an impression of the supporting teeth is made so a dental lab can custom fit the bridge. Finally a temporary dental bridge is inserted to protect the supporting teeth as well as the space between them.
On your second visit the permanent bridge is placed and adjusted to insure proper fit and function. If the fit of the bridge is satisfactory Dr. Holloway will proceed with permanently cementing the bridge into place.
Once the bridge is permanent, it is critical to practice proper brushing and flossing to ensure the longevity of the bridge. It is also important to maintain the oral health of the supporting teeth and gums. The team at Floss will work with you to ensure an ongoing preventative and healthy-mouth plan to maintain the integrity of your bridge.
Dental Bridge Post Treatment Expectations
After the successful completion of the bridge you may feel slight discomfort, mild pain when biting or sensitivity to temperature changes for a few days. As advised by Doc, you can take over-the-counter pain medicine, that contains ibuprofen, to alleviate the discomfort. If these symptoms persist more than a few days, call us at Floss.
Importance of Replacing the Missing Teeth
Replacing the missing teeth goes deeper than cosmetic. While replacing teeth will help restore your smile and confidence, it also will restore your ability to properly chew and speak, and helps you avoid unnecessary pain. Often the surrounding teeth will shift in the space caused by the missing teeth, causing a misalignment in your bite that can result in problems with your jaw joint. These shifted teeth are harder to clean, making them more susceptible to gum disease, decay or even additional tooth loss.