A bridge replaces a missing tooth or teeth. It is called a fixed bridge because it is not removable. A bridge is a structure, supported by teeth on either side of a space. It spans the gap between teeth, just as a bridge spans a river. The first step is to prepare the supports for the bridge. Replacement crowns are placed over existing teeth as supports for a bridge. The dentist pares down the teeth on either side of the gap, and takes an impression of the prepared teeth. This is then sent to the dental technician where the bridge is made. The technician will make a replacement crown for each prepared tooth. These crowns are joined to an artificial tooth, which replaces the missing tooth. The dentist will then cement the completed bridge over the prepared teeth.
A replacement crown replaces part or all of the natural crown of a tooth. It is also called a crown or a cap. The visible part of the tooth is called the crown. It is joined to the root of the tooth which is in the jawbone under the gum. When all, or a large part of the original crown of a tooth has been destroyed, a replacement crown is made to restore the tooth. A replacement crown is also made for a healthy tooth when it forms part of a bridge, or when it is used for cosmetic purposes. A natural crown that has become discolored or unsightly can be replaced with a new crown. The new crown can be made to match the surrounding teeth in colour, shape and proportion. A replacement crown is prepared by the dentist and made by a dental technician.
The dentist will pare down the tooth, and remove any decay. An impression of the prepared tooth is taken using an elastic material. This is sent to the dental technician, where the replacement crown is made. A temporary acrylic crown will be fitted over the prepared tooth, while the replacement crown is being made. The new crown is then cemented onto the prepared tooth. Replacement crowns can also be used as supports for a bridge, where they are joined to artificial teeth to fill a gap between the teeth.
Replacement crowns are very successful for restoring teeth. They are functional: chewing is comfortable and the same as with natural teeth. They are aesthetic: they look natural and match the size, colour and shape of the other teeth. They are durable: they are known to last for up to forty years.