Dental Crowns in Bay City
If a tooth breaks, or if it needs such a large filling that it is in danger of breaking, a dental crown is the preferred restoration.
While a filling replaces decayed tooth structure with filling material, it does little to strengthen the tooth. Amalgam fillings, in particular weaken the tooth and make it more susceptible to breaking. Composite fillings, since they bond to the tooth, will strengthen a tooth.
But even with composite, when there is a lot of tooth structure missing, a filling will not strengthen the tooth enough to protect it. A dental crown covers the entire tooth and is the best way to prevent fracture.
Getting a dental crown is generally a two-appointment process. The tooth is prepared on the first appointment, an impression is taken of the prepared tooth, and a temporary crown is placed. The impression is sent to a dental laboratory where the crown is precision fabricated to fit your tooth exactly, and to fit into your bite.
In a follow-up appointment, the dental crown is fitted to your tooth and permanently cemented.
Example of when a crown is needed: Both of these teeth need dental crowns. The one on the left has already broken. It should have had a crown some time ago, to prevent it from breaking. The one on the right hasn’t broken yet, but you can see discoloration and cracks on the right side of the tooth that indicate it is at high risk of breaking.
Dental Bridges in Bay City
This diagram shows what a dental bridge looks like. It is two crowns, with a false tooth suspended between them, that is cemented over the adjacent teeth.
If you have one or two missing teeth, there are two common options for replacement teeth. One is a dental implant. A dental implant acts and feels almost exactly like your own tooth, so it is becoming a popular option for replacing missing teeth.
But dental implants are not for everyone. They require surgery, are not appropriate for every situation, and usually require a period of two or more months of healing time to complete treatment. A dental bridge is faster to place, and is the traditional treatment of choice for a missing tooth.
A dental bridge involves placing two dental crowns on the teeth adjacent to the missing tooth. The teeth are prepared for crowns, an impression is taken, a temporary bridge or temporary crowns are placed over the prepared teeth, and the impression is sent to a dental laboratory where the bridge is made to precisely fit your teeth and your bite.
In a follow-up appointment, the dental bridge is adjusted and fitted and then permanently cemented.