A crown is a type of dental restoration which completely “caps” or encircles a tooth or dental implant. Besides protecting and strengthening a damaged tooth, a crown can be used to improve its appearance, shape, and alignment.

Crowns are often needed in different situations including, when a large filling is not sufficient enough to restore a decayed or broken tooth, to act as crown abutments for a bridge, to cover dental implants, to cover discolored teeth (cosmetic), to cover a tooth that had a root canal, etc. They are typically bonded to the tooth using a permanent crown cement.


A fixed bridge may be recommended if you are missing one or more teeth with remaining teeth present next to the missing teeth. Gaps untreated/left by missing teeth eventually cause the surrounding teeth to rotate/shift into the empty spaces, and opposing teeth to “super-erupt” and eventually become loose. Subsequently, it can result in a bad occlusion/bite, damage/fracture of remaining teeth, gum disease, and/or temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.

Bridge restorations are commonly used to replace one or more missing teeth, and they span the space where the teeth are missing. Bridges are cemented to the natural teeth or implants surrounding the empty space. These teeth or implants, called abutments, serve as anchors for the bridge. A replacement tooth, called a pontic, is attached to the crowns that cover the abutments.

Materials that are used to fabricate crowns and bridges include porcelain, ceramic, gold, metal alloys and acrylic. Porcelain, porcelain fused to metal casting, and ceramic can be matched to the color/shade of natural teeth and create a bright and attractive smile.