Crowns and bridges can improve appearance and enhance oral health; see Roach Family Dentistry, who serves patients in the Nashville, Tennessee, area.
Crowns and bridges are dental appliances used to replace one or more missing teeth. The crown is attached to the remaining part of the tooth while the bridge is an actual appliance with one or more prosthetic teeth attached to it. A bridge might be removable (also called a partial plate) or cemented in place. The prosthetic tooth can be made from porcelain or a resin composite material.
Healthy teeth include both the root and the tooth itself. The crown is used to replace the missing tooth material and is attached to the remaining tooth. A crown is used to replace a badly decayed tooth rather than one that is completely missing (although a crown may be attached to an implant if the tooth is missing completely). A bridge is more likely to be used when several teeth are missing in the same area. It either has metal hooks to keep it in place or is permanently cemented in place.
The prosthetic tooth on either a crown or a bridge can be made of porcelain or resin composite. These materials can be color-matched to a patient’s natural teeth. Crowns can also be made from metals like gold or a metal alloy. The bridge is made of plastic and may be strengthened with internal wires. A removable bridge also has hooks that attach to remaining teeth on each side of the missing teeth to hold the bridge in place.
Just like natural teeth, crowns and bridges should be brushed twice a day and flossed daily. In addition, it’s important to visit the dentist for a check-up and professional cleaning every six months. A removable bridge should be taken out and brushed carefully, then rinsed with clear water before it is placed back in the mouth. The gum area under the removable bridge should also be brushed and rinsed. Patients should also visit the dentist at least twice a year for a checkup and professional cleaning.
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