A crown (or “cap”) is a way to replace missing tooth structure or protect a tooth from fracturing in the future especially when a large filling already exists. Crowns are designed to protect, support, and reshape your existing teeth. In certain cases a crown can be recommended to improve a tooth’s appearance.
A bridge is one of the ways to replace a missing tooth. A bridge “anchors” onto the teeth on either side of a missing tooth with one or more teeth in the middle to fill the space. A bridge is cemented onto the anchor teeth which means that it stays in place and does not come in and out of your mouth. It is important to replace missing teeth in a timely manner. When there is a missing tooth in your smile, the teeth nearest the gap tend to shift and move which can affect your bite alignment and lead to further damage.
An implant is another way to replace missing teeth. An implant is a titanium screw that mimics the root of a natural tooth. An abutment and crown (cap) are then cemented or screwed on to the top of the implant to replace the missing tooth. Implants can also be used to stabilize a denture and help the denture fit and feel better to you.
Partials can replace one or more missing teeth while a complete denture replaces all of your missing teeth of either your upper or lower jaw. Unlike bridges and implants, partials and dentures are not cemented in the mouth so they can be taken in and out of your mouth.
Patients are often surprised to hear that gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss, even more common than tooth loss from tooth decay. Further, the effects of gum disease extend far beyond the mouth. There are links between gum disease and many systemic diseases including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, premature births, the list goes on.
For these reasons, it is very important to detect gum disease early, so that it can be treated before irreversible damage such as bone loss occurs. Gum disease usually does not cause symptoms until it has been present for quite some time. Once the damage has been done, it often is irreversible. However, if treated, the damage can be minimized.
Our modern-day stressful lives leave many of us clenching and grinding our teeth. This can happen day or night and surprisingly we can be entirely unaware that we are doing this. The result of these habits can cause worn teeth, broken teeth, and jaw pain. Appliances (bite guards) protect your teeth and give your muscles and jaw the opportunity to relax, breaking the cycle of clenching and grinding.
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Hendersonville, NC 28739