Crowns and bridges

In cases where a lot of tooth structure has been lost or where it is necessary to reshape or recreate the tooth above the gum line (the crown), this may be the occasion for the dentist to consider placing a cemented, laboratory constructed crown or bridge. Modern day ceramic technology means that these restorations can look incredibly natural and are fixed in place.

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A crown is an ideal way to restore teeth under the following circumstances:

  • To replace a large discoloured filling to improve the appearance of a tooth.
  • To strengthen and protect a tooth especially following a root filling
  • To help retain a bridge or dentures

Crowns are constructed at technical dental laboratories under instruction from your dentist after taking a scan or impression of the prepared tooth (teeth).

Porcelain bonded to precious metal (bonded crowns)

A strong and thin precious metal base is constructed and then porcelain fused in layers over it to give very realistic enamel like quality.

Porcelain (Empress)

These crowns are made entirely out of porcelain, without the metal base, giving very natural finish and are often used for front teeth.

All-ceramic (Zirconia)

This modern technique offers a metal-free alternative, giving the strength of a bonded crown and the appearance of a porcelain crown which is suitable for use in all areas of the mouth.

Gold-alloy inlay/overlay/full coverage crowns

Available in yellow/silver precious gold alloy in partial or full covering. High strength, useful in tight bite situations where space at a premium. Minimal preparation needed and very useful as supporting a resin bonded bridge.

A bridge is a way of replacing a tooth that has been lost, utilising the adjacent tooth or teeth as supports or abutments. The replaced tooth (termed the pontic) is positioned to form a close contact with the gum allowing effective cleaning but also giving the appearance of emerging from the tissues.  

Resin bonded (Maryland) bridge

Often used to replace missing teeth at the front of the mouth. A technique requiring minimal tooth preparation, using silver non precious metal alloy bonded with resin to the unseen enamel surfaces of the adjacent tooth (teeth).

Conventional bridge

Adjacent teeth to the missing tooth prepared for crowns and the missing tooth (pontic) recreated by the technical laboratory and attached to form one structure which is cemented permanently in place. Before the introduction of implants, this type of bridge was the conventional way to replace missing teeth other than providing false teeth (dentures).