When a tooth is cracked, decayed, or damaged, a crown may need to be fitted onto the tooth. A crown is a permanent covering that fits over the original tooth. Crowns can be made of porcelain, gold and other metals, acrylic resin, or a mix of these materials. Porcelain crowns typically have the most realistic appearance. Crowns can whiten, reshape, and realign existing teeth, adding to a bright, healthy smile.
A bridge is used to fill the space where a tooth has fallen out or been removed. A typical bridge consists of a pontic (a filler tooth) that is attached to two surrounding abutments (crowns). Once complete, this bridge structure is bonded into the mouth. Without the use of a bridge, spaces in the mouth from missing teeth can cause multiple teeth to shift, lead to occlusion (biting) and/or jaw problems and spur periodontal disease.