A crown or cap is a permanent dental restoration that completely encircles or “caps” a tooth. A crown is used to restore the anatomy, function and esthetics of a tooth. Generally, crowns are recommended to reinforce and protect teeth that have root canals, large fillings or to fix teeth that have been broken, malformed or heavily stained.
Crowns involve two dental appointments. The first appointment involves the removal of a small amount of tooth structure equal to the amount of material in the crown, followed by taking a mold or impression of the remaining structure, which is used by our dental laboratory to create the crown. The second appointment, two weeks later, is when the crown is permanently cemented in place.
A bridge on the other hand, is a permanent dental restoration that is used to replace one or more missing teeth that have resulted in a gap between remaining teeth. In addition to replacing missing teeth, bridges also prevent the teeth adjacent to the gap from drifting or moving out of position, which can lead to changes in the bite along with other issues.
A bridge is essentially a grouping of interconnected crowns cemented to the healthy teeth on either side of the gap. Like crowns, a bridge can be fabricated from various metals or a combination of porcelain fused to the outside of metal.