What are dental crowns?

A crown is a cap which completely covers a tooth or dental implant.  A crown can be made from porcelain, gold, alloys or a combination of these materials.  Crowns are typically bonded to the teeth using a dental cement. Implant-supported crowns are typically attached to an implant with screws, or bonded with dental cement.

What are dental bridges?

bridge is used to fill a gap created by one or more missing teeth. A bridge is made up of three or more crowns splinted together. It is composed of crowns for the teeth on either side of the gap, and one or more false teeth in between to fill the gap.

An implant-supported bridge uses implants instead of teeth as the support for the missing tooth/teeth.

A bridge can be made from porcelain, gold, alloys or a combination of these materials.

When do I need a crown or bridge?

Crowns are often used to improve the strength or appearance of teeth which may otherwise not able to support a filling. They are necessary when a tooth has a higher probability of fracture, has large existing fillings, or has had a root canal treatment. They are often used along with an dental implant to replace missing teeth.

A bridge is used to replace one or more missing teeth. A bridge can be supported by natural teeth or implants. For a tooth-supported bridge the missing teeth should have supporting teeth on both sides that are strong and (ideally) free from gum disease. An implant-supported bridge is usually used to replace multiple missing teeth in one area (three or more).

Portions excerpted from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crown_(dentistry) under the Creative Commons license.

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