Bridges And Crowns

Crowns

Whenever larger fillings do not serve their original purpose any longer, it is a very good idea to have a crown made. A damaged tooth can be protected and covered by a crown. Broken edges might develop on a filling so that they do not properly seal a tooth any longer. A new filling may be able to be used if it is a small filling. However, if there is a large filling in a tooth, and not much is left of the original tooth material for the filling to attach to, then a better solution might be a crown.

Dental crowns fit on top of your natural teeth once they have been shaped for accepting the crown. A crown might be needed to protect your tooth due to any of the causes below:

  • After a Root Canal
  • Big Cavity
  • Crown That Is Falling Apart
  • Chipped Tooth
  • Worn Down Fillings

Procedure

In order to restore your tooth using a crown, it takes two appointments. That is due to the fact that the crown has to be custom hand-crafted by a dental lab so that it fits your bite and tooth precisely. The following steps are necessary for your new crown to be produced:

  • Your tooth will be numbed with a local anesthetic and topical.
  • Any decay that is present will be removed
  • A handpiece will be used to shape the tooth.
  • A precise impression will be taken of your teeth.
  • While the dental lab is crafting your permanent crown, you will be provided with a temporary crown. It can take one to two weeks for your permanent crown to be made.
  • At your next dentist visit, the temporary crown will be removed and you will be fitted with the new permanent crown.
  • Once you are your dentist are satisfied with the bite and fit the crown will be cemented into place permanently.

Bridges

Bridges are replacements for missing teeth that are anchored into place using adjacent teeth. Having a bridge put in can help to prevent an entire series of dental problems from occurring after a tooth is lost, including the following:

  • The tooth that opposes the missing tooth might start extruding from its socket.
  • Chewing problems can be caused by the missing tooth.
  • TMJ problems may develop.
  • For the teeth that may have shifted, it can be much more difficult to clean them, and advancing periodontal disease might cause additional tooth loss.

Procedure

Using a bridge to restore your mouth takes two appointments. That is due to the fact that the bridge has to be custom hand-crafted by a dental lab so that it will fit your teeth and bite precisely.

  • Your tooth will be numbed with a local anesthetic or topical.
  • Any decay that is present will be removed.
  • A handpiece is used to shape the teeth.
  • A precise impression is taken of your teeth.
  • As the dental lab is crafting your permanent bridge, we will fit you with a temporary bridge. That can take around two weeks to complete.
  • On your next dentist visit, we will remove your temporary bridge and fit your new permanent bridge.
  • Once your dentist and you are satisfied with the bite and fit, your bridge will be cemented permanent into place.

Dentures

Your natural teeth can be artificially replaced by dentures. If lack of dental care or disease can leave you no or few healthy teeth, then your dentist may recommend dentures to replace the teeth that are missing. Your smile will be restored by the dentures and return some of your former chewing power.

In contrast to permanent bridges, which may be supported by dental implants or teeth, dentures can be removed. Dentures might replace just a few missing teeth or all of them. Dentures are made out of acrylic resin, and partial dentures are made out of a combination of metal and acrylic resin.

Who needs dentures?

Dentures are not inevitable as you grow older, contrary to popular belief. If you brush and floss your teeth every day and visit your dentist on a regular basis, it should be possible for you to retain your natural teeth for life. However, if you don't care for your teeth properly, then gum disease (periodontitis) and tooth decay (dental caries) may result in your teeth needing to be removed. Even when you do your best to make sure your teeth are kept clean, there are some conditions and diseases that make you more prone to developing problems with your teeth, including the following:

  • Dry mouth (xerostomia): Your teeth are cleaned, disinfected and re-mineralized by your saliva. Dry mouth can be caused by menopause, some medications, some diseases like Sjogren's syndrome and cancer treatments.
  • Diabetes - Your gums' resistance to getting infected is weakened by diabetes, particularly when it is poorly controlled.
  • Issues with self-care: There are some diseases that can make it harder to care for yourself, like Alzheimer's, along with diseases that may cause limited movement, like arthritis, can make it difficult to keep up with your dental care on a daily basis.

Certain medications may put at risk for gum disease due to them causing inflammation and overgrowth of your gums (gingival hyperplasia). Some examples include the following:

  • Calcium channel blockers that are used for treating high blood pressure or heart disease.
  • Cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune), a drug that is prescribed following an organ transplant
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin), a type of epilepsy drug

If you do take one of these medications, be sure to speak with your dentist about things you can do to keep your mouth and teeth healthy while you are taking your medications.

Types of dentures

The kind of denture prescribed by your dentist will be based on your individual needs and how many natural teeth you have remaining. Your dentist may recommend one of the following:

  • Complete Dentures - This type of denture covers your whole jaw and may be used in placing your lower teeth, upper teeth, or both of them. Complete dentures are comprised of gums and artificial teeth. They rest on your gums directly and are used when you have no natural teeth left.
  • Partial Dentures - This type of denture fits around the remaining healthy teeth that you have. Partial dentures have gum and artificial teeth, with a metal framework connecting it all. They are typically held in place with clamps attaching to your remaining natural teeth.
  • Overdentures - This type of denture fits over dental implants or the remaining teeth that you have. Your implants or teeth provide the denture with stability, so there is a chance of it shifting inside of your mouth. Having implants or retaining some of your natural teeth helps to preserve your jawbone as well. Your natural teeth will need to be reshaped in order to fit the overdenture.

How dentures are fitted with your mouth

The way that dentures get made for your mouth will depend on whether you will be getting your dentures after your gums heal or right after your teeth get removed.

Immediate dentures

This type of denture gets inserted on the same day that your teeth are removed. Before your teeth are removed, you will go see your dentist for several appointments so that molds can be made of your jaws. Then your teeth will be removed and the denture inserted. Your jawbone and gums will shrink once your teeth have been removed, so later your denture will need to be replaced or adjusted.

If the front teeth from your upper jaw are being removed then you may want to consider getting an immediate denture. Getting a denture immediately can help to reduce how much embarrassment you may feel about not missing front teeth.

It may not be possible to get an immediate denture if your diseased teeth are unable to withstand having a mold (impression) made of your teeth. You will need to get a conventional denture if that is the case.

Conventional dentures

Conventional dentures are fitted after your gums have healed and teeth are extracted. This is usually around two months after your tooth has been removed. Impressions will be made of your mouth by your dentist after your teeth have been removed so that your dentures will properly fit your gums. Since the diseased teeth are removed, trial fitting can be made with your new dentures while your dentist works to make sure they fit exactly right.

When you choose conventional dentures, you won't have teeth for a few months as your dentures are being made and your jawbone and gums are heating. That may make it hard to eat, and you may be self-conscious about the way you look. However, over the long run, usually conventional dentures do fit better.