Our Offices: Prescott (928) 641-4000
Prescott Valley (928) 772-9860|Chino Valley (928) 636-1565

Dr. Mark Costes
Dr. Sean Reed



Horizon Dental Horizon Dental Horizon Dental Horizon Dental Horizon Dental

Dental Crowns and Dental Bridge

Dental Crown

First, you may be wondering, what is the difference between a dental crown and dental bridge?

All of these dental terms can be confusing. A bridge is a natural-looking way to replace missing teeth, essentially bridging the cap between the teeth with an artificial tooth molded to fit in that space. While a dental crown restores teeth that have been extensively filled, cracked or compromised. Crowns are placed on top of implants and act as the supports for a bridge when placed on natural tooth roots. A dental crown is a manufactured top of a tooth made to replace the function, fit and appearance of a natural tooth that has problems.

The two main categories of bridges your dentist will choose to help you are fixed and removable. The fixed bridge is cemented in place permanently and the removable bridge is not. The traditional fixed bridge is made of a false tooth (called a pontic) and crowns attached to either side. Crowns are caps that go over the adjoining teeth, and they help to hold the pontic in place.

Dental Bridge Procedure

Your general dentist may decide that a resin-bonded fixed bridge would be better for you. This type of bridge is anchored with resin and metal bands instead of crowns, and it may be used if the adjacent teeth are healthy and have a good, firm bond with the jawbone. The metal bands are fixed to these adjacent teeth and then the pontic is anchored to the bands. A removable bridge is made of replacement teeth attached to a pink plastic base. This type of bridge is also known as a partial denture or a removable over-denture. Apologies if we are getting too technical, but we find that as our clients get closer to needing a bridge or crown done, they ask deeper questions of the process.

Before you get a removable bridge, Dr. Costes or Dr. Reed will take impressions of your mouth. They will determine the closest size and fit to your mouth. This prescription will be sent to a lab where your bridge will be made. If you need a fixed, traditional bridge, we may have to make room for the crowns by reducing the teeth that are adjacent to the empty space. We will take an impression of your mouth and send this to a lab where they will make your bridge. When your bridge is ready, you will visit your dentist again so he can put the bridge in your mouth and make any necessary adjustments. He will cement or bond the bridge into your mouth. This can take some time, depending on how busy the lab is.

Dental Crown Procedure

The most common material used to fabricate a crown is porcelain. It is a sturdy, durable substance that can be etched and matched to the color of the surrounding teeth. Ceramic, glass, stainless steel and gold may also be used depending on the type of restoration required, and the patient's budget. The crown placement usually takes two appointments: one to prepare the tooth and take an impression of the site where the crown is going; and a second appointment to place the crown once it's manufactured in a lab. If the crown is part of root canal treatment, then that procedure will be performed at this time. Crowns can be supported by implants or suspended in between two "abutting" teeth or by a single supporting tooth (cantilever).

How is a dental bridge made and installed?

Before you get a removable bridge, Dr. Costes or Dr. Reed will take impressions of your mouth. They will determine the closest size and fit to your mouth. This prescription will be sent to a lab where your bridge will be made. If you need a fixed, traditional bridge, we may have to make room for the crowns by reducing the teeth that are adjacent to the empty space. We will take an impression of your mouth and send this to a lab where they will make your bridge. When your bridge is ready, you will visit your dentist again so he can put the bridge in your mouth and make any necessary adjustments. He will cement or bond the bridge into your mouth. This can take some time, depending on how busy the lab is.

How much do crowns and bridges cost?

The cost can depend on which bridge the dentist thinks is best for you. At Horizon Family Dental our staff will go over costs with you before the procedure. If you have insurance, our dental assistants can help you to determine what, if anything, your insurance will cover. If you don't have insurance, they can go over financing options with you

Why should I get a bridge?

If you have missing teeth, this is a problem you shouldn't ignore! Missing teeth can decrease your quality of life. It can make you self-conscious about talking and smiling, and it can make it hard to enjoy your favorite foods. And, if you have missing teeth, it doesn't take long before your other teeth start to move out of position. This can cause problems with your bite. And, the area missing the tooth is more susceptible to gum disease, and the surrounding teeth are more likely to suffer tooth decay. If you have missing teeth, Horizon Dental, dentists in Chino Valley and Prescott Valley, can help!

Why do I need dental crowns?

Prescott Valley dentists use dental crowns to restore teeth that have been extensively filled, cracked or compromised. Crowns are placed on top of implants and act as the supports for a bridge when placed on natural tooth roots. Each patient's treatment plan will be determined based on their own particular dental and financial situation. Once the crown is in place, it needs to maintained just like a natural tooth. If plaque and tartar are allowed to build up, acid can eat away at the supporting structure beneath the crown, or cause gum or bone deterioration, compromising the stability of the tooth and crown. Your dentist or hygienist can show you how to clean and care for your crown. With good hygiene, crowns can last up to 15 years.

You don't have to live with missing teeth! Having a missing tooth not only affects your confidence, but it can also affect how you eat and speak. It can cause serious problems not to mention serious mouth pain. If you are missing one or more teeth, let Horizon Family Dental experts, Dr. Mark Costes and Dr. Sean Reed help! We will work with you on the best solution to getting your dental health back in order.