Nikhil M. Patel, DMD
Laser Dentistry & Family Dentistry located in Worcester, MA
Damaged or missing teeth can attract a lot of attention — the wrong kind. Nikhil M. Patel, DMD, specializes in restoring smiles with dental crowns and bridges at his self-titled office in Worcester, Massachusetts. Crowns protect and restore chipped, cracked, or otherwise flawed teeth, while bridges fill gaps in a smile. To see if a crown or bridge is right for your dental situation, call or schedule an appointment online today.
Crowns and Bridges Q & A
What is a dental crown?
Crowns are custom-made caps that Dr. Patel fits on top of damaged or weak teeth to protect them and r estore them to optimal health and appearance. He uses metal-free crowns made out of zirconium, a type of ceramic known for its durability, to perform a variety of functions, including:
- Protecting a chipped or cracked tooth from fracturing
- Protecting a tooth after it has undergone a root canal
- Restoring the appearance of a discolored tooth
- Replacing a filling
- Covering a prosthetic for extra protection
In order to make your crown, Dr. Patel takes impressions of your tooth, which he sends to a dental lab so your crown can be created.
What is a dental bridge?
Dental bridges are sets of one or more prosthetic teeth, which Dr. Patel uses to span, or bridge a gap in your smile. These fixed dental appliances can replace one or multiple teeth lost due to decay or trauma. Dental bridges not only improve your smile, they prevent the harmful shifting of neighboring teeth into gaps and improve functions, such as chewing, digesting, and speaking.
Similar to crowns, bridges are made in a dental lab based on impressions of your mouth, teeth, and gums.
How are crowns and bridges placed?
With crowns, Dr. Patel bonds the appliances onto your affected teeth using a strong adhesive or cement. With a bridge, Dr. Patel first places crowns on the teeth that flank the gap in your mouth. Then, Dr. Patel bonds the bridge to those teeth.
With both crowns and bridges, Dr. Patel may need to slightly file down the size of your teeth with special dental tools in order to make room for the appliances.
How long do crowns and bridges last?
With crowns, their lifespan will largely depend on how well you take care of your teeth. As long as you brush and floss regularly, maintain regular checkups, and get professional cleanings, your crowns should last a lifetime.
With bridges, you can expect them to last at least 10-15 years with proper care. With both appliances, as your mouth naturally changes over time, Dr. Patel may need to make slight adjustments.
If you’re missing teeth or have a chipped, cracked, or discolored tooth that requires intervention, call or use the online booking tool to schedule an appointment with Nikhil M. Patel, DMD today.