Houston cosmetic dentist patient with a dental crown

Houston Cosmetic Dental Crown Versus Dental Bridge

Dental crowns and dental bridges are prosthetics designed to correct significant damage, decay, or even missing teeth. But what’s the difference between the two? And which one is best for your needs? Our Houston cosmetic dentist gets these questions often, as both crowns and bridges are common treatments for many patients. Keep reading to better understand each option and determine which one is right for you.

Houston Dental Crowns

A dental crown is a synthetic cap placed over a tooth with too much damage or decay for a traditional filling to suffice. Typically, dental crowns are completed in two visits: one to remove the decay and take impressions to create the crown, then another to permanently affix the crown to the damaged tooth. In between visits, Our Houston cosmetic dentist will provide you with a temporary crown to protect the tooth until the permanent crown is ready. 

Houston Dental Bridges

A Houston dental bridge, on the other hand, is designed to replace missing teeth instead of damaged ones. A bridge is constructed of two crowns that permanently affix to existing teeth with a prosthetic tooth or teeth between those crowns. The crowns keep the prosthetic tooth in place and prevent existing teeth from shifting around the gap your missing tooth or teeth left behind. Our Houston cosmetic dentist will follow a similar process for creating and affixing a bridge as for a crown: it will require two visits and a temporary bridge will be applied while the lab creates the permanent one.

Caring For Houston Dental Bridges and Houston Dental Crowns

Regardless of which treatment you undergo, care for crowns and bridges is relatively similar. 

Brush and Floss Often

Crowns and bridges require you to maintain regular flossing and brushing habits. In fact, sometimes food can get stuck under the surface of these prosthetics, allowing bacteria to grow and decay the existing tooth underneath, leading to more problems.

Avoid Sticky or Hard Foods

Sticky and/or hard foods can cause the crown to shift or come loose, especially if you’re still wearing a temporary Houston dental crown or Houston dental bridge while waiting for your permanent one to be made. 

Use a Night Guard

Grinding or clenching puts an intense amount of pressure on your teeth, and crowns and bridges can crack or break under this pressure. If your Houston dentist has told you they see evidence of teeth grinding, especially at night, you may need to be fitted for a nightguard. 

Use Care With a Temporary Crown or Bridge

Because a temporary dental crown is meant to be worn for a short time, the adhesive used to keep it in place is intended to make removal easier for our Houston dentist. Therefore, be careful while chewing and be especially gentle when brushing, flossing, or performing any other aspects of temporary dental crown care.

Maintain Regular Dental Check-ups

Scheduling regular visits with our Houston cosmetic dentist is the most important step in dental crown and bridge maintenance. We can ensure they are still properly seated and identify the likelihood of future issues before they arise. 

Crowns and Bridges With Our Houston Dentist

If you’re still wondering which treatment is right to correct your dental issues, remember that missing teeth will require a dental bridge, as crowns are simply caps and can only be affixed to existing teeth or implants. But regardless of whether our Houston cosmetic dentist recommends a crown or a bridge, both come in a variety of materials to fit your individual needs. Factors like cost, strength, and visibility may impact your choice. The best way to ensure you’re making the right decision is to schedule an appointment with our Houston dentist; we’ll be happy to discuss the process, as well as the right next step for you.