Crowns can help if:
- Your tooth is susceptible to decay or it already has large fillings in it.
- Your tooth is discoloured and you’re unhappy with its appearance
- Your tooth has been root filled.
- Your tooth is misshapen and it affects the way you bite
What exactly are crowns?
A crown is sometimes referred to as a cap, which is a great description – it simply fits on top of an existing tooth. It can restore the shape, colour and function of your original tooth.
What are my options?
There are three main types of crown available:
- All Metal
These are normally used to cover back teeth, which are obviously less visible. The crown is usually silver (but can also be gold) and is great for restoring the shape and function of your tooth.
- Metal and Porcelain
These have a metal inner core (which is great for strength) with porcelain bonded over it to provide a natural appearance.
- Porcelain or Ceramic
There’s a wide range of this type of crown available and they can be very durable and long lasting. They have a more natural look but are more complex to produce so are often more expensive than crowns which include metal.
Will it hurt?
Your tooth is prepared for a crown under a local anaesthetic, and the procedure should feel no different from that of a filling. If you have a crown fitted following a root canal treatment, you may not even need a local anaesthetic.
Are crowns safe?
The materials used to make a crown are common in many dental procedures, and should pose no risk to your health or well-being.
Can I afford a crown?
We believe everyone should be able to afford the dental care they need, so we have a range of competitive prices and finance options to make sure as many people as possible experience the benefits of crowns.
A bridge, also called a “fixed bridge” or a “fixed dental prosthesis,” is a dental restoration that replaces one or more missing teeth. It extends across an area that has no teeth and is typically made up of an artificial tooth fused between 2 crowns. (A crown is a hollow, artificial tooth that fits over a natural tooth or a dental implant). The bridge is held firmly in place by your own teeth on each side of the missing one(s) or by dental implants. A bridge is permanent and cannot be removed.
Why should I replace missing teeth?
Your appearance is one reason. Another is that the gap left by a missing tooth can mean greater strain 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 alter the way the upper and lower teeth bite together. This can then lead to food getting packed into the gap, which causes both decay and gum disease.
How are missing teeth replaced?
This depends on the number of teeth missing and on where they are in the mouth. The condition of the other teeth also affects the decision.
There are two main ways to replace the missing teeth. The first is with a removable false tooth or teeth – a partial denture. The second is with a fixed bridge. A bridge is usually used where there are fewer teeth to replace, or when the missing teeth are only on one side of the mouth.
Can I always have a bridge to replace missing teeth?
Yes, if you have enough strong teeth with good bone support. Your dentist will help you decide the best way of replacing your missing teeth within your budget.
What are bridges made of?
Bridges are usually made of a precious metal base. If the bridge will show, porcelain is then bonded to the base. Sometimes, there are other non-precious metals used in the base to reduce the cost.
How do I look after my bridge?
You need to clean your bridge every day, to prevent problems such as bad breath and gum disease. You also have to clean under the false tooth every day. Your dentist or hygienist will show you how to use a bridge needle or special floss, as a normal toothbrush cannot reach.
Are there other methods for fixing false teeth?
There are other methods, such as using a combination of crowns and partial dentures that can keep the retaining clips out of sight. These are quite specialised dentures, so you should ask your dentist about them. You can also have teeth implanted, ask your dentist for more information. Remember that it’s as important to care for your remaining teeth as it is to replace the missing ones.
Are there different types of bridge?
Yes, there are different types of bridge which use different fixing methods. Your dentist will choose the most effective and conservative bridge for your personal situation.