Dental crowns and bridges in Sugar Land, TX are fixed prosthetic devices that are used to improve a smile cosmetically. Crowns (also called “caps” because they cover a tooth entirely) are most commonly placed on cracked or broken teeth to restore looks and function. They are also used to cover dental implants, to replace a large filling, and to cover a discolored or poorly-shaped tooth. Bridges are used to fill in a gap where one or more teeth are missing. They rely on the natural teeth to support the artificial tooth.
Crowns are custom-made using impressions taken of a prepared tooth. To prepare a tooth, it must first be cleaned of any decay and reshaped. It will be filed down a small portion to make room for the crown to fit. A local anesthetic is usually used so that there is no pain or discomfort. Once it has been prepped, a mold will be taken of it and the surrounding teeth. A dental laboratory will create the crown based on this mold. A temporary crown will be placed to protect the tooth until the second appointment.
When the permanent crown is ready, a second visit to the dentist will be needed to have the temporary crown removed and replaced with the permanent crown, which will be cemented into place. The dentist can make adjustments as needed to ensure the right fit and create the proper bite.
Bridges consist of two parts: the artificial tooth (or teeth), called the pontic, and the teeth that serve as anchors, called the abutment teeth. To have a dental bridge placed, the abutment teeth first must be prepared to receive a crown. This involves being filed down a small portion and having an impression made. For bridges, an impression will be taken of the gap in the teeth as well. When the permanent bridge returns from the dental lab, it will be cemented into place. Additional appointments may be necessary to adjust the bridge to achieve a perfect fit.