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Crowns & Bridges

Both dental crowns and bridges are restorative dental solutions. This means they replace or strengthen missing or damaged teeth. Both of these restorative dental procedures use prosthetics to restore teeth. Dr. Marchbanks, Arlington dentist, can do both procedures.

Dental crowns vs. dental bridges

These two restorative dental solutions address related but different issues. A crown is used when a tooth structure is damaged. A bridge is used when one or more teeth are missing.

Unlike removable tooth replacements like dentures, crowns and bridges are both semi-permanent. They’re cemented onto existing teeth or onto dental implants, and can only be removed by a dentist.

Uses of dental crowns

A dental crown is the most popular restorative solution to “cap” a damaged tooth. This strengthens the damaged tooth as well as restores the patient’s smile.

The renewed tooth-like shape and function also helps patients maintain their regular eating habits. Plus, the porcelain and ceramic crowns can both be matched to the color of patients’ natural teeth.

Crowns are usually recommended when:

  • Replacing a large filling where little tooth remains
  • Protecting weak teeth from fracturing
  • Restoring fractured teeth
  • Completing a bridge
  • Completing a dental implant
  • Covering a discolored or poorly-shaped tooth
  • Covering a tooth that has undergone a root canal

Uses of dental bridges

Bridges are recommended when a patient is missing one or more teeth. There are four main types of dental bridges:

  1. Traditional
  2. Cantilever
  3. Maryland
  4. Dental-implant-supported

Bridges are cemented to the natural teeth or dental implants on both sides of the gap being treated. These neighboring teeth are called “abutments” and serve as anchors for the bridge prosthetic. The replacement tooth or teeth (called “pontics”) are then attached to the crowns that cover the abutments.

The oral imbalance caused by missing teeth can lead to the shifting of remaining teeth as well as the reduction of bone in the jaw. For these reasons, and especially when a patient has a gap of several teeth, a bridge is often the corrective procedure recommended.

Bridges are used, for example, to:

  • Restore a smile with missing teeth
  • Restore the ability to chew comfortably
  • Re-adjust bite to properly distribute force
  • Restore speech and pronunciation
  • Maintain the shape of a patient’s face
  • Prevent other teeth from shifting out of place

Just like with crowns, patients have choices of material for dental bridges. Dr. Marchbanks helps patients decide which to use based on the location of the bridge.

Whatever dental solution you need, our Arlington staff will inspire your confidence. Contact us to make an appointment today.

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