Synthetic caps placed on the top of a tooth
Crowns are ceramic coverings of your tooth designed to return a damaged tooth to its original strength and appearance. When decay has become so advanced that large portions of the tooth must be removed, crowns are often used to restore the tooth.
Crowns are also used to attach bridges, cover implants, prevent a cracked tooth from becoming worse, or when existing filling is in jeopardy of becoming loose or dislocated. Crowns also serve an aesthetic use, and are applied when a discolored or stained tooth needs to be restored to its natural appearance. Crowns can be a valuable component of a smile makeover.
With proper care, the American Dental Association says high-quality crowns last around 10–15 years. It is very important to floss in the area of the crown to avoid excess plaque or collection of debris around the restoration. And, heck you may as well floss those other teeth while you're at it! It is possible to get a new cavity around an existing crown, so treat them really well to keep you cost down and your dental experiences easy.
Certain behaviors such as jaw clenching or bruxism (teeth grinding) significantly shorten the life of a crown. Moreover, eating brittle foods, ice or hard candy can compromise the adhesion of the crown, or even damage the crown.
Bridges are natural-looking dental restorations that can replace a section of missing teeth. Because they are custom-made, bridges are barely noticeable and can restore the natural contour of teeth as well as the proper bite relationship between upper and lower teeth. Bridges are sometimes referred to as fixed partial dentures, because they are semi-permanent and are bonded to existing teeth or implants. Porcelain, gold alloys or combinations of materials are usually used to make bridges.