The Process of Getting Crowns and Bridges | Elements Dental Spa
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The Process of Getting Crowns and Bridges: What to Expect During Your Dental Visits

If you’re considering dental crowns or bridges to improve your smile and oral health, you might be wondering what the process involves. These treatments can help restore damaged teeth or replace missing ones, giving you the confidence to smile freely.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through what to expect during your dental visits for crowns and bridges, making the journey as clear and comfortable as possible. From the initial consultation to the final fitting, we aim to explore the process, ensuring you feel informed and at ease every step of the way. Remember, achieving a healthier, more beautiful smile is a journey worth taking.

Ready to take the first step toward your new smile? Trust the experienced team at Elements Dental Spa to guide you through the process of getting crowns and bridges with care and professionalism. Contact us today to discover how we can transform your smile.

Understanding Crowns and Bridges

Before exploring the types of dental crowns and bridges, it is essential to understand that crowns serve as caps for damaged teeth, while bridges fill the gap created by one or more missing teeth.

Types of Dental Crowns

Dental crowns are custom-fitted tooth prosthetics that are used to cover a tooth. They can restore both the functionality and aesthetics of the tooth.

Crowns are made from various materials, each with its advantages:

  • Metal Crowns: Durable and long-lasting, they rarely chip or break.
  • Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal Crowns (PFM): Matched to the color of adjacent teeth, they offer a strong bond.
  • All-Porcelain or All-Ceramic Crowns: Best natural color match, well-suited for people with metal allergies.
  • Composite Resin Crowns: Less expensive but more prone to wear and discoloration.

Types of Dental Bridges

Dental bridges are used to replace missing teeth, anchored by adjacent teeth, or by dental implants.

dental bridgesThey are constructed in several styles to address different needs:

  • Traditional Bridges: Involve creating a crown for the tooth or implant on either side of the missing tooth, with a pontic (false tooth) in between.
  • Cantilever Bridges: Used when there are adjacent teeth on only one side of the missing tooth.
  • Maryland Bonded Bridges (Resin-bonded Bridges): Made of porcelain, porcelain fused to metal, or plastic teeth supported by a metal or porcelain framework.
  • Implant-supported Bridges: Supported by dental implants rather than crowns or frameworks.

Initial Consultation and Examination

The initial consultation and dental examination are critical first steps in the process of getting crowns and bridges, where the dentist assesses oral health and suitability for the procedure.

Dental Examination

During the dental examination, the dentist performs a comprehensive assessment of the patient’s oral health.

This includes an evaluation of:

  • The condition of existing teeth
  • Gum health
  • Jaw and bite alignment

The assessment may involve digital X-rays or intraoral photography to gain a detailed view of the tooth’s structure and surrounding bone.

Treatment Planning

After the examination, the dentist discusses the treatment options with the patient.

They will outline the step-by-step process for getting crowns or bridges, which includes:

  1. Preparing the affected teeth
  2. Taking impressions
  3. Placing temporary crowns or bridges

The dentist also provides information on the materials available for the crowns or bridges, their benefits, and the costs involved, helping the patient make an informed decision.

Preparation of Teeth

Dental crowns and bridges are common restorative procedures that require precise preparation of the affected teeth. This preparation is crucial for the fit and longevity of the prosthetic.

Tooth Shaping

The first step in preparing a tooth for a crown or bridge is shaping it. The dentist must remove the right amount of tooth structure to allow the crown or bridge to fit properly.

This involves:

  • Trimming the tooth: The dentist uses a burr to reshape the tooth’s enamel, creating a tapered form.
  • Considerations based on material: For metal crowns, less tooth structure is removed compared to porcelain crowns.

Tooth Impression

After shaping the tooth, it’s time to make an impression, which serves as a mold for the new crown or bridge.

The dentist typically follows these steps:

  1. Selection of impression material: Takes into account the patient’s specific situation and the dentist’s preference.
  2. Impression taking: The dentist fills a tray with impression material and places it over the teeth to set, capturing the shape and position.

Temporary Crowns and Bridges

Temporary crowns and bridges serve as a provisional solution while permanent restorations are being fabricated. They play a critical role in protecting the tooth and maintaining the proper spacing between teeth.


The dentist starts by preparing the tooth, which may involve reshaping it to properly fit the crown or bridge. Then, an impression of the tooth is taken to create a model for the temporary and eventual permanent restoration.

dentist with patientThe temporary crown or bridge is often made of acrylic-based material and is secured with temporary cement, making it easier to remove once the permanent restoration is ready.

  1. Tooth Preparation: Tooth is shaped and an impression is taken.
  2. Temporary Creation: The impression aids in fashioning a temporary crown or bridge.
  3. Fitting: Temporary is tested for fit and bite.
  4. Cementing: Temporary cement secures the restoration.

Care Instructions

Temporary crowns and bridges require special care to prevent damage and ensure they remain in place until permanent restorations are installed.

Patients should:

  • Avoid sticky or hard foods that could pull off or break the temporary.
  • Chew on the opposite side of the mouth to lessen the pressure on the temporary crown or bridge.
  • Maintain hygiene with gentle brushing and avoid flossing around the temporary to prevent dislodging.
  • Report to the dentist if the temporary loosens or breaks, as prompt care is necessary.

Permanent Crown and Bridge Fitting

The permanent fitting of crowns and bridges marks the culmination of restorative dental work, where precision and durability are of utmost importance.

Final Adjustments

Before the definitive placement, the dentist ensures the crown or bridge fits perfectly with the existing dental structure.

Final adjustments are made with great attention to detail, focusing on bite alignment and comfort. The patient’s bite is checked to ascertain that the crown or bridge does not disturb the natural occlusion. Any high spots or misalignments are carefully reshaped to facilitate a flawless fit.

Cementing Procedure

The cementing procedure is critical as it permanently secures the crown or bridge to the prepared teeth. First, the dentist selects a dental cement that offers suitable longevity and compatibility with the patient’s dentition.

Once the fit is verified, the crown or bridge is meticulously cleaned and then affixed with the chosen cement. After the placement, excess cement is removed to prevent irritation or infection. The cement must cure for a precise duration to ensure optimal adhesion and function.

Post-Procedure Care and Maintenance

After receiving dental crowns or bridges, patients should adhere to specific care routines to ensure the longevity of their restorations and maintain oral health.

Daily Oral Hygiene

One must brush twice a day using fluoride toothpaste and floss at least once to prevent plaque buildup. The use of interdental brushes or floss threaders is recommended to clean underneath bridges effectively. It’s crucial to avoid hard or sticky foods that could compromise the crown or bridge.

  • Brushing: Use a soft-bristle toothbrush moving in gentle circular motions.
  • Flossing: Slide floss carefully between the teeth and under the bridge area.

Regular Dental Check-Ups

Regular dental examinations and cleanings are vital every six months or as advised by the dentist. These visits allow dental professionals to monitor the condition of crowns and bridges and address any issues promptly.

  • Check-Ups: Professionals can detect early signs of wear or damage.
  • Cleanings: Professional cleanings remove plaque and tartar that at-home brushing might miss.

Schedule Your Dental Crowns and Bridges Appointment at Elements Dental Spa!

Enhance your smile and restore your dental health with personalized care at Elements Dental Spa in Baton Rouge. Our dedicated team specializes in providing high-quality crowns and bridges designed to improve both the function and aesthetics of your teeth. With a focus on comfort and excellence, we ensure a seamless experience from consultation to completion.

Schedule your appointment today and take the first step towards a radiant, confident smile with our state-of-the-art dental solutions

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does the typical dental crown procedure take from start to finish?

  • The typical dental crown procedure is generally completed in two appointments spanning over one to three weeks, depending on the patient’s oral health status and the dental lab’s schedule.

What are the steps involved in getting a dental crown placed?

  • A dental crown placement usually involves tooth preparation, impression taking, temporary crown fitting during the first visit, and permanent crown placement during the second visit after the custom crown is created in a dental lab.

Can you describe the process and duration of a dental bridge appointment?

  • The process of getting a dental bridge typically mirrors that of a crown, involving two main appointments, with the first for tooth preparation and impression taking and the second for bridge fitting and adjustments. Each appointment may last from one to several hours.

What are the potential drawbacks or risks associated with dental crowns?

  • Dental crowns may pose risks such as discomfort, increased tooth sensitivity, and the potential need for future repairs or replacements. Proper care and good oral hygiene minimize these risks significantly.

How does one choose between different types of dental crowns, and what are the associated costs?

  • Choosing between different types of dental crowns involves considering material durability, aesthetics, and cost. Porcelain, ceramic, gold, and metal alloys are common options, with costs varying based on material, complexity, and geographic location.

What should a patient expect in terms of comfort and recovery following a crown or bridge procedure?

  • Following a crown or bridge procedure, patients may experience mild discomfort or sensitivity, which typically subsides within a few days. Over-the-counter pain medication can help manage any discomfort during the recovery period.