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Home > Dental Crowns or Dental Bridges: Which Tooth Replacement Option Is Best for You

Dental Crowns or Dental Bridges: Which Tooth Replacement Option Is Best for You


Decayed, damaged, or aging teeth can disrupt your smile’s natural shape and beauty and affect your facial formation. The proper alignment of your teeth is essential to keeping your enamel and jawbone in good condition. However, damaged and missing teeth may cause severe issues in the long run. 

To restore your smile with a tooth replacement option, most patients visit a dentist who performs dental crowns and dental bridge treatments

Dr. Raynald, our Pineville, NC dentist, will discuss in detail the differences between dental bridges and crowns. We serve your dental needs, and we want you to be adequately informed about how we do dental crown and dental bridge procedures in our office. 

What Is a Dental Crown?

Dental crowns are porcelain-made teeth that are permanently fixed over a natural tooth to restore its function and appearance. Crowns cover the entire tooth and are primarily used by the dentist to treat decay or damage to an existing natural tooth.

Your dentist may recommend a crowning procedure for any of the following conditions:

  • A fractured tooth that is in danger of breaking.
  • A large portion of the center tooth is missing due to damage or decay.
  • A tooth that is missing a cusp.


Our dental team at Radiant Smiles Family Dentistry will examine your dental health to determine if a dental crown is the best solution for your oral condition.

How Do Dental Crowns Work?

When a crown is placed over a weak, decaying, and damaged tooth, it maintains the tooth’s size, shape, appearance, and strength. For patients with missing teeth, your dentist will first give you a dental implant upon which a crown will be placed. 

Depending on your preference or budget, your crown will be designed from one or a mixture of various materials. Although gold alloy and other metal alloys are more durable and cost-effective, they are noticeable and won’t appear like your natural teeth.

However, acrylic, ceramic, and porcelain crowns look like natural teeth and are less conspicuous. Acrylic and ceramic crowns are more durable compared to porcelain crowns. Porcelain crises are slightly prone to damage and chipping; however, bonded to a metal shell, they can stand the test of time while maintaining their attractive tooth-like aesthetic.

How Are Dental Crowns Made?

If your dentist recommends a crown for your damaged or decayed tooth, the first procedure is to make an impression of your bite. The model helps your dentist determine your new tooth’s shape, its structure, and how it will be attached so they can send it to the lab afterward. The designing of your crown may be done in-office, depending on the type of material you choose. 

With a Computer-Aided Drafting/Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAD/CAM) tool, you can get your crown in a single visit, especially if you’re capping a damaged tooth.

What Is a Dental Bridge?

A dental bridge, the name implies, serves as a bridge for dental crowns. It is made up of three or more dental crowns. Your dentist will recommend a dental bridge if you have a missing tooth or teeth. Dental bridges have outer and inner crowns. The outer crowns are laid on the two teeth beside the gap left by the missing tooth, and the inner crowns cover the gap by replacing the missing tooth or teeth.

If you are looking for dental services in Pineville, NC that can restore the appearance of your smile, a dental bridge may be an excellent option. Dental bridges also help to prevent the occurrence of shifting teeth when you have a missing tooth.

How Do Dental Bridges Work?

The primary function of a dental bridge in Pineville is to replace one or more missing teeth. Unlike dental crowns, bridges require dental implants at the outer area edging the loss location or the placement of caps on filed-down teeth. Replacement teeth will cover the space between the caps where you have missing teeth.

Also, there are a variety of dental bridges you can choose from based on the materials they are made of. However, your dentist is best positioned to suggest the material that properly fits your needs. Your dentist will discuss and consider multiple factors, such as the cost, strength, and visibility of your tooth before suggesting the right bridge for you.

How Are Dental Bridges Made?

Before a dental bridge is made for you, the outer edges of the area having the loss will be shortened to enable perfect balance and fitness when your brace is placed on them. Like dental crowns, your dentist will also take the impression of your bite to craft the exact mold for the bridge.

Your bridge will be created in our dental office from your bite impression, and while we are doing this, we will use temporary bridges or crowns to cover the prepared teeth. It’s important to know that we may not have to reduce the outer edges of your loss when the bridge is placed on implants.

Primary Differences Between Dental Crowns and Dental Bridges

Like a cap covering your head, a dental crown can cap a decaying or damaged tooth or be placed atop an implant to replace a missing tooth. Because of how dental implants are made, they must be surgically fastened to your jawbones just below the gum to provide proper support while you eat or speak. Your dentist afterward places an abutment into your implant before placing your crown. 

The dental bridge’s sole function is to replace missing teeth. They are not suitable for damaged or decaying teeth. Bridges have two crowns on either end of a bridge and replacement teeth that fit in the area of the gums where you have tooth loss. The crown at the ends of a dental bridge will be fused to the existing teeth, which need to be reduced or attached to a dental implant.

Any tooth-replacement options you choose can be crucial in maintaining your jaw bone, facial appearance, and oral health. When gaps aren’t cared for immediately, they can cause other teeth in the area of loss to shift or rotate into empty spaces, leading to you developing a bad bite. Also, missing teeth may result in temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders and gum disease.

Which Tooth Replacement Treatment in Pineville is Best for You?

Radiant Smiles Family Dentistry in Pineville, NC.

When choosing between bridges and dental crowns, remember that dental crowns are best used when you have a damaged or decaying tooth that’s still functional. If a tooth is damaged beyond repair or a tooth is missing, a dental bridge may be the better option.

However, your dentist will help determine the right dental treatment for you. A comprehensive examination of your teeth and gums can help create a customized treatment plan that suits your condition.

Schedule an Appointment With a Dentist That Does Dental Crowns Near You!

Are you looking for a Pineville, NC dentist that does crowns or bridges near you? At Radiant Smiles Family Dentistry, we provide dental procedures to help restore confidence in your smile. We are delighted to provide our patients with various restorative dentistry options to enjoy a lifetime of excellent dental health. Schedule an appointment with us for a comprehensive oral examination today!


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