What is a crown?
A dental crown is a tooth-shaped "cap" that is placed over a tooth -- to cover the tooth to restore its shape and size, strength, and improve its appearance.
The crowns, when cemented into place, fully encase the entire visible portion of a tooth that lies at and above the gum line. Crowns are fixed prosthetic devices. Unlike removable devices such as dentures, which you can take out and clean daily, crowns are cemented onto existing teeth or implants, and can only be removed by a dentist.
Dental Crown is perhaps most widely used in the cosmetic and restorative dental treatments at Gupta Dental Care.
Why dental crowns are needed?
Crowns are an ideal way to repair teeth that have been broken, or have been weakened by decay or a very large filling. A crown could be used for a number of other reasons, for example:
- You may have a discolored filling and would like to improve the appearance of the tooth
- You may have had a root filling and need a crown to protect what is left of the tooth
- It may help to hold a bridge or denture firmly in place.
What types are crown are available?
Permanent crowns can be made from stainless steel, all metal (such as gold or another alloy), porcelain-fused-to-metal, all resin, or all ceramic.
Stainless steel crowns are prefabricated crowns that are used on permanent teeth primarily as a temporary measure.
Metals used in crowns include gold alloy, other alloys (for example, palladium), or a base-metal alloy (for example, nickel or chromium). Metal crowns withstand biting and chewing forces well and probably last the longest in terms of wear down.
Porcelain-fused-to-metal dental crowns can be color matched to your adjacent teeth (unlike the metallic crowns). However, more wearing to the opposing teeth occurs with this crown type compared with metal or resin crowns.
All-resin dental crowns are less expensive than other crown types. However, they wear down over time and are more prone to fractures than porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns.
All-ceramic or all-porcelain dental crowns provide better natural color match than any other crown type and may be more suitable for people with metal allergies. However, they are not as strong as porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns and they wear down opposing teeth a little more than metal or resin crowns. All-ceramic crowns are a good choice for front teeth.
Dr. Abhishek Gupta with his exclusive experience in Dentistry recommends the choice of crown based on the patient need and severity of damage. “Most of the patients are unaware about the type of crowns available and their pros and cons. Me and my team believes in educating patient about the available choices and making them comfortable during the treatment.”, says Dr. Abhishek Gupta, HOD of Dental Care Department, Gupta Dental & Eye Care.
While crowns and bridges can last a lifetime, they do sometimes come loose or fall out. The most important step you can take to ensure the longevity of your crown or bridge is to practice good oral hygiene.
Dental Bridges for Missing Teeth
Dental bridges literally bridge the gap created by one or more missing teeth. Dental bridges are supported by natural teeth or implants. A dental bridge is usually used where there are fewer teeth to replace, or when the missing teeth are only on one side of the mouth. Bridges are usually made of a precious metal base.
“One or more missing teeth can take a toll on your smile and appearance. The gap left by a missing tooth can mean more strain is put on the teeth at either side. A gap can also mean your ‘bite' is affected, because the teeth next to the space can lean into the gap and change the way the upper and lower teeth bite together. This can then lead to food getting packed into the gap, which causes tooth decay and gum disease.”, says Dr. Abhishek Gupta, HOD of Dentistry Department at Gupta Dental and Eye Care, Wanowrie, Pune.
What are the benefits of dental bridges?
Dental Bridges help in
- Restoring your smile
- Restoring your ability to properly chew and speak
- Maintaining the shape of your face
- Distributing the forces in your bite properly by replacing missing teeth
- Preventing remaining teeth from shifting out of position
What Types of Dental Bridges Are Available?
Traditional Bridges involve creating a crown for the tooth or implant on either side of the missing tooth, with a pontic in between. Traditional bridges are the most common type of bridge and are made of either porcelain fused to metal or ceramics.
Cantilever Bridges are used when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth or teeth. This is not very common any more and is not recommended in the back of the mouth where it can put too much force on other teeth and damage them.
Maryland bonded bridges (also called a resin-bonded bridge or a Maryland bridge) are made of porcelain, porcelain fused to metal, or plastic teeth and gums supported by a metal or porcelain framework. Metal or porcelain wings on each side of the bridge are bonded to your existing teeth.
Dental Bridges are long term solution. Dental bridges can last 5 to 15 years and even longer. With good oral hygiene and regular checkups, it is not unusual for the life span of a fixed bridge to be over 10 years.