Crowns and bridges are beneficial for preserving your teeth and helping maintain a proper bite. Leading board-certified dentists Dr. Catherine Im uses only the latest techniques and technology for designing crowns and bridges. If you’re in the Renton, Washington area, call or book an appointment online with the office of Renton Family Dentistry.
Crowns and bridges serve the same general purpose: To preserve your natural teeth and normal bite. As its name implies, a crown is a cap. It rests over your tooth and acts as a protectant if you’ve been through a root canal or have a broken tooth.
A bridge covers a gap between teeth if you are missing a tooth. It’s basically a custom device that consists of a crown, a false tooth, and another crown — all in one piece. The false tooth acts as a placeholder to prevent the rest of your teeth from shifting. It’s held in place by “anchoring” the crowns to teeth on either side.
Crowns and bridges can last a lifetime. Their durable materials are designed to withstand years of wear-and-tear, just like your natural teeth. When crowns and bridges don’t last as long as they should, the reasons are usually the result of poor oral hygiene.
If you don’t brush regularly or start skipping your dental cleanings, your teeth underneath your crown or bridge may decay. This can cause your crown or bridge to come off, and if decay is severe, you may need to have the tooth reshaped. You need a new crown or bridge if this happens.
It’s normal to have some discomfort during dental procedures. But with advancements in dental technology and the sedation dentistry options, you have no reason to be in any pain. Dr. Im thoroughly numbs the entire area before getting started and if it starts wearing off, she can stop and numb you again during your procedure. When you combine this with sedation, including nitrous oxide — or laughing gas — you should be completely relaxed and pain-free during your crown or bridge appointment.
Some patients complain about the drilling sensation to shape your tooth. While uncomfortable, particularly on your top teeth, it’s more of an odd sensation than pain. Drilling only lasts for a few minutes and Dr. Im can take a few breaks if you need them.