Crowns and Bridges

Long-Term Solutions to Missing or Painful Teeth

Crown and bridgework is a very reliable solution for major dental problems caused through accidents, diseases or wear and tear. Major problems can usually be corrected using these techniques. Material used in these repairs is either high-grade porcelain, or porcelain bonded to gold. A higher strength of the porcelain and gold materials is recommended to treat the most serious of dental problems.

Where accidental damage has occurred, resulting in lost teeth, or where teeth have broken away through excessive wear, or as the result of old fillings breaking, crowns and/or bridges can be used as a long-term solution.

Many people have unexplained pain from filled back teeth, which is usually due to hairline cracks in the chewing part of the tooth. Placing crowns on these teeth relieves the pain 96% of the time and allows a return of full dental function for these teeth. In front teeth, older fillings can both weaken the teeth and cause “appearance” problems due to staining or chipping. Porcelain crowns and bridges are suitable in cases where porcelain veneers are not. In teeth with root canal fillings, crowns can prevent breakage.

Tooth Crowns

What is it and when is it appropriate?

Where damage to a person’s teeth is extreme, and beyond repair, we can use porcelain crowns to make the smile appear “as new”. This extremely reliable technique for repairing the most severe of dental problems can definitively replace missing teeth and offer a complete smile and a functional bite.

What are the benefits?

  • Crowns are used for long lasting corrections of major dental problems. These treatments can last for 10 to 20 years, which is as close to permanent dental treatment as it can get.
  • Prevents teeth from fracture and the patient from pain.
  • Restores shape and function to misshapen teeth or badly broken down teeth.
  • Restores natural appearance.

What is the procedure?

Fitting a crown requires at least two visits to our office:

  • Initially, we will remove decay, replace decayed tooth structure with a filling, then shape the tooth, and fit it with a resin temporary crown.
  • On the subsequent visit, we will remove the temporary crown, and then fit and adjust the final crown. Finally, we will cement the crown into place and you have a new beautiful looking tooth.

Common Concerns and Questions

What types of tooth crowns are available?

Porcelain: Porcelain is almost always used where the tooth shows. By choosing porcelain, it more closely matches existing teeth, keeping your smile its best. In building a crown, porcelain is fused to a substructure that is custom selected to match your needs. The substructure is built from the most durable materials possible, based on your situation, metal have been traditionally used, but metal free options are available.

Gold: Dr. Kvinsland believes that gold is still the most durable material for crowns. He will discuss with you what your best option is based your situation.

Bridges

What is it and when is it appropriate?

Once a tooth is removed the surrounding teeth usually will have a tendency to tilt into the space. Most of the time, the opposing tooth will grow down (or up) into the space as well. When this happens your bite becomes misaligned and can cause painful and troublesome symptoms in the joint in front of your ear, commonly referred to as TMJ symptoms.

A bridge (fixed partial denture) is a device, which fills the gap where teeth are absent. Fixed bridges are bonded into place and can only be removed by a dental professional. Removable bridges, as the name implies, can be taken out and cleaned. Fixed bridges offer more stability and feel more natural than a removable bridge.

What are the benefits?

Dental health is the most important reason for a bridge. Teeth were designed to complement each other. Unusual stresses are placed on the gums and other oral tissues when teeth are missing, causing a number of potentially harmful disorders including gum disease.

What is the procedure?

The procedure usually takes two appointments to complete. At the first appointment Dr. Kvinsland will prepare the teeth on either side of the gap by shaping them.

Since the bridge must be fabricated very precisely to ensure correct bite and to match the opposing tooth, impressions of the teeth are taken and sent to a lab where the bridge will be constructed.

Fixed bridges are typically cemented to the natural teeth next to the space left by the missing tooth. A pontic (false tooth) replaces the lost tooth Crowns, which are cemented onto the natural teeth, provide support for the bridge.

Common Concerns and Questions

What materials are used?

Bridges can be constructed from gold alloys, non-precious alloys, porcelain, or a combination of these materials. Porcelain is often bonded to a metal substructure. The development of wonderful new materials has allowed us to provide “metal free” dentistry to those who desire it.

How do I take care of my bridge?

A routine regimen of brushing and flossing will keep the bridge and surrounding teeth clean. This is of critical importance as the bridge relies on the neighboring teeth for support.