Veneers are a great aesthetic solution to your smile that may even help you avoid orthodontic treatment. Subtle changes to your smile can be achieved with veneers, and in most cases, veneer application is completed in only two office visits.
A crown is a permanent covering that fits over an original tooth that is either decayed, damaged, or cracked. Crowns are made of a variety of different materials such as porcelain, gold, acrylic resin, or a mix of these materials. Porcelain generally has the most natural appearance, although it is often less durable.
The treatment plan for a patient receiving a crown involves numbing the tooth to remove the decay in or around it, re-sculpturing the tooth to provide an ideal fit for the crown, making an impression of your teeth in order to create a custom-made crown (usually takes one to two weeks), making a temporary crown out of acrylic resin and fitting it onto the tooth during the interim period when the permanent custom-made crown is being created, applying the permanent crown (when received from the lab) by removing the temporary crown, and fitting the permanent one onto the tooth.
After ensuring that the crown has the proper look and fit, the dentist cements it into place. This process generally consists of a minimum of two to three visits over a three to four week period.
We also offer the CEREC one-appointment crown system, which allows us to shape the tooth, create an all-ceramic crown or onlay, and cement the restoration all in one visit. The type of crown used to restore your tooth is chosen by the doctor to best fit the specific needs presented by the condition of your tooth.
Once the procedure is completed, proper dental hygiene, including daily brushing and flossing, is required to maintain healthy, bacteria-free teeth, gums, and crowns. This helps in the prevention of gum disease. Given proper care, your crowns can last a lifetime.
A bridge is a dental device that fills a space that a tooth previously occupied. A bridge may be necessary to prevent shifting of the teeth that can lead to bite problems (occlusion) and/or jaw problems and resultant periodontal disease. Bridges safeguard the integrity of existing teeth and help maintain a healthy, vibrant smile.
There are three main types of bridges:
- The “Fixed” bridge, the most popular, consists of a filler tooth that is attached to two crowns, which fit over the existing teeth and hold the bridge in place.
- The “Maryland” bridge is commonly used to replace missing front teeth and consists of a filler that is attached to metal bands that are bonded to the abutment teeth. The metal bands consist of a white-colored composite resin that matches existing tooth color.
- The “Cantilever” bridge is often used when there are teeth on only one side of the span. A typical three-unit cantilever bridge consists of two crowned teeth positioned next to each other on the same side of the missing tooth space. The filler tooth is then connected to the two crowned teeth, which extend into the missing tooth space or end.
Composite bonding is a common solution for repairing chipped or cracked teeth, reducing unsightly gaps or spaces between teeth, and hiding discoloration or faded areas on the tooth’s surface. Bonding improves the appearance of your teeth and enhances your smile.
As the name suggests, composite material (of either plastic or resin) is bonded to an existing tooth. Unlike veneers or crowns, composite bonding removes little, if any, of the original tooth.
Composite bonding has many advantages: It is a quick process, which typically lasts less than one hour. It does not reduce the tooth’s original structure and is relatively inexpensive.
Composite resins come in many different shades and provide better matching of shades to the natural color of your teeth.
Composite bonds, however, are not as durable and long-lasting as veneers and crowns and may need to be re-touched or replaced in the future. Composite bonds stain more easily and therefore require proper care and regular cleaning.
In order to ensure the longest possible duration of the bonding, composites should be brushed and flossed daily. Common staining elements include coffee, tea, tobacco, foods, and candy.