Crowns and Bridges Frequently Asked Questions

Questions to Ask About Crowns and Bridges

Prior to considering crowns and bridges as your option of choice, it is a good idea to prepare for your consultation with the dental specialist and make a list of all the questions that you would like to address at the visit.  That way, not only can you make a more informed and educated decision about your teeth, there will also be no confusion between both you and the dentist and there will be no surprises.

Q. In considering a bridge, why is a crown employed?

A. Having a crown made for you and inserted over your tooth like a cap, saves the tooth and avoids having an unnecessary extraction.  The crown strengthens a tooth that has been compromised by large fillings or dental decay and trauma.

Q. Crowns are made in different materials.  Which is better for me?

A. The latest technology creates crowns made with porcelain material.  This makes the tooth look and feel very natural and improves the appearance of the smile.  While an amalgam or metal allow shows the extent of dental work, a porcelain crown will have a white reflective shine, mimicking your own teeth.

Q. Will the crown be obvious when I smile?

A. If the crown is made from porcelain, it can be made to exactly match the shade and shape of your other teeth so that it blends in with the adjacent teeth, making it difficult to discern from the surrounding ones. When the lining is porcelain as well, then even though the gum line may recede (which is typical in the aging process), the crown will look like your other teeth.

Q. Is the placement of a crown or bridge painful?

A. The operative site where the crown or bridge will be placed can be made numb with local anesthetics.  If you are very anxious or have a low pain threshold, your dentist can address this by administering sedation (intravenous or inhalation) anesthesia.

Q. What role do crowns play in bridge attachments?

A. Crowns are generally placed on the two teeth adjacent to the bridge to be attached for strength to these teeth.  Then the bridge, constructed with one or more artificial teeth, is attached to the teeth being covered, spanning the gap in between. Metal bands connect the crowns to the artificial tooth, holding it in the proper place.  Unfortunately, some healthy tissue in the adjacent teeth is removed to make room for the appliance.

Q. How long do bridges last?

A. Bridges can last more than ten years if proper oral hygiene is maintained.

Q. What is a fixed bridge?

A. A fixed bridge, which replaces one or more missing teeth, cannot be removed from your mouth.  It is fixed onto the two crowns adjacent to either side of the bridge.

Crowns and bridges look very natural now with the latest techniques and you can sport them with confidence