At Estrabillo Dental Group, we do our best to help you maintain optimum oral health. We offer an array of options for restorative services such as crowns and bridges for patients who suffer from common oral health issues that require necessary care. Whether you want to improve the look of your smile or replace old or outdated dental treatments, we look forward to assisting you. Offering a holistic approach to dentistry, we serve patients of all ages with quality care; please contact us today to schedule an appointment for dental crowns or bridges in Ancaster so you can maintain your oral and overall health.
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 and/or jaw problems and resultant periodontal disease. Bridges safeguard the integrity of existing teeth and help maintain a healthy, vibrant smile. There are many types of bridges; here are the most common ones we offer.
Maryland bridge – This is commonly used to replace missing front teeth and consists of filler that is attached to metal bands that are bonded to the abutment teeth. The metal bands consist of a white-coloured composite resin that matches existing tooth colour.
Cantilever bridge – This 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.
Fixed bridge – The most popular bridge, it consists of a filler tooth that is attached to two crowns, which fit over the existing teeth and hold the bridge in place.
A crown is a permanent covering that fits over an original tooth that is 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.
This process generally consists of a minimum of two to three visits over a three to four week period. Once the procedure is completed, proper dental hygiene that includes daily brushing and flossing is required to maintain a healthy, bacteria-free mouth. This helps in the prevention of gum disease. Given proper care, your crowns can last a lifetime.
A typical treatment plan for receiving a crown is:
Which Crown is Right for You?
Crowns can be fabricated out of an assortment of materials. They can be created from all metal, all ceramic or porcelain fused to metal that is a combination of all materials.
Each type has its own unique advantages and disadvantages. All-metal crowns are known for their strength and durability. Some types of all-ceramics are known for the superior aesthetics they can provide. Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns offer the middle ground between the two.
Advantages of Gold Crowns
Having a gold dental crown made can be an excellent choice. Here are some reasons why:
Strength and durability – Gold crowns are very strong and are able to withstand biting and chewing forces well.
Will not chip – It is uncharacteristic for a gold crown to break. They have the potential of lasting the longest.
Kind to neighbouring teeth – The gold alloys that are used to make dental crowns have a wear rate that is about the same as tooth enamel.
They are easy for a dentist to work with – Alloys that have a high gold content are typically very workable metals (they have favorable physical properties). This characteristic can aid a dentist in achieving a very precise crown-to-tooth fit.
Disadvantages of All-Metal Crowns
They’re not white– About the only disadvantage of metal dental crowns is their appearance. And because of this, they’re not usually placed on teeth that are readily visible when the person smiles. They can, however, make a great choice for some molars, especially bottom ones.
Consider a Porcelain “Window”
If you want the durability and strength of a metal crown but are concerned about the aesthetics of a metal crown, it is possible to surface the metal crown with porcelain. This is sometimes referred to as a veneer or “window.” Others will still be able to see a hint of the metal that surrounds the porcelain. They’ll also be able to see the all-metal chewing surface of the crown. But this option may make having a metal crown a possibility where otherwise it would not.
Porcelain and Ceramic Crowns
Dental crowns that show prominently when you smile are made from porcelain or dental ceramic, they are fabricated in a way where their entire thickness is porcelain or other dental ceramic.
Advantages of All-Ceramic Crowns
Of all the choices, ceramic is the most aesthetically pleasing of all the choices. Because of this, they are an excellent choice for front teeth. It is important to note that not all ceramics are fabricated equally. Single-appointment ceramic crowns that are created from a single cube of material don’t offer the same aesthetics as one that is hand crafted by a dental technician using layers and different shades of porcelain.
Disadvantages of All-Ceramic Crowns
The overall strength of an all-porcelain dental crown is generally less than all-metal and PFM crowns. However, those made from modern dental ceramics may be more durable. A good choice for front teeth due to their aesthetics, they may not be the best choice for back tooth applications. Our dentist can help you determine the right material for your crown.
Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal Dental Crowns
Porcelain-fused-to-metal dental crowns (PFM’s) are somewhat of a hybrid between metal and porcelain crowns.
When they are made, the dental technician first makes a shell of metal that fits over the tooth. A veneering of porcelain is then fused to this metal in a high-heat oven. This gives the crown a white tooth-like appearance.
Advantages of Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal Dental Crowns
They’re strong – Due to their great strength, PFM dental crowns can make a good choice for either front or back teeth. This type of crown is second to all-metal in terms of strength and durability. PFM’s have a very long, well documented history of providing lasting service.
They’re natural looking – For some people, and some applications, the big advantage of a PFM crown over an all-metal one is simply that its tooth coloured.
Disadvantages of PFM Crowns
There are some disadvantages associated with porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns (which no doubt your dentist will try to minimize as much as is possible). They include:
The “dark line” phenomenon – The metal that lies underneath the crown’s porcelain can sometimes be visualized as a dark line found right at the crown’s edge. We will try to position the dark edge underneath the tooth’s gum line. If your gums happen to recede the dark line may show.
Achieving superior aesthetics can be difficult – While the cosmetic appearance of PFM crowns can be excellent, they often are not as aesthetically pleasing as all-ceramic ones. For the most part, this difficulty comes from the fact that the crown’s metal substructure must be masked by covering it with relatively opaque (less lifelike) porcelain. While this requirement doesn’t create a problem in all cases, it often presents challenges and results in aesthetic compromises.
Durability – It’s possible that the porcelain on a PFM crown will chip or break off. It would generally be expected that a PFM crown would pose less risk to crack or break than most all-ceramic types. All-metal crowns avoid this complication all together. If porcelain breakage does occur, it’s very difficult to make a lasting repair. The most predictable solution is typically making a new crown. As a compromise, some minor chipping may just be smoothed over or polished.
They may wear opposing teeth – The porcelain surface of a PFM crown can create wear on those teeth that it bites on or rubs against. This issue might be especially important for people who clench and grind their teeth.
This potential is greatest in those cases where during placement the crown’s “bite” needed to be trimmed and the crown’s surface was not subsequently re-glazed and treated in a high-heat oven, or at least thoroughly smoothed and polished.