Difference between dental crowns and bridges. Which is the most beneficial to use?

Difference between dental crowns and bridges. Which is the most beneficial to use?

Mar 01, 2024

Maintaining good oral health is essential for a beautiful smile and overall well-being. Dental issues like damaged or missing teeth can be a significant concern, affecting your appearance and functionality. Dental crowns and bridges are two common solutions to address these problems. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the differences between dental crowns and bridges to help you decide which option is most beneficial for you.

Dental Crowns: An Overview

Dental crowns, or caps, are meticulously crafted dental restorations designed to envelop and protect a tooth that has been compromised or weakened. They serve several purposes, including:

  • Protecting a weakened tooth from further damage.
  • Restoring the shape, size, and appearance of a tooth.
  • Enhancing the strength and functionality of a tooth.
  • Covering discolored or misshapen teeth.

Varieties of Dental Crowns to Suit Your Needs

When it comes to dental crowns, the choices can be as diverse as your dental needs. These custom-made restorations come in various types, each offering unique advantages. Let’s explore the world of dental crowns and discover which one might be the perfect fit for your smile.

-Porcelain Crowns

-Ceramic Crowns

-Metal Crowns

-Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal (PFM) Crowns

-Zirconia Crowns

 Dental Bridges: An Overview  

Imagine dental bridges as custom-made replacements for your missing teeth. These clever devices include artificial teeth (known as pontics) that seamlessly fill in the gaps left by your missing teeth. These pontics are securely anchored in position by attaching them to crowns, which are placed on the teeth neighboring the space. Bridges serve several purposes, including:

  • Restoring your smile and facial aesthetics.
  • Improving your ability to speak and chew.
  • Distributing the forces in your bite evenly.
  • Preventing adjacent teeth from shifting.

Key Differences

Now that we have a basic understanding of dental crowns and bridges let’s delve into the key differences between these two restorative options:

  1. Purpose: 
    • Dental crowns primarily protect and restore damaged or weakened teeth.
    • Dental bridges are a wonderful solution for replacing missing teeth, effectively restoring your beautiful smile.
  2. Number of Teeth Involved: 
    • Crowns involve only one tooth.
    • Bridges have the remarkable ability to step in and take the place of one or even several adjacent missing teeth.
  3. Procedure: 
    • Dental crowns are placed directly on the individual tooth after reshaping.
    • To ensure dental bridges can securely and efficiently support the replacement teeth, a certain level of preparation is required for the neighboring teeth.
  4. Materials: 
    • Crowns can be made from various materials, including porcelain, ceramic, metal, and zirconia.
    • Bridges are often crafted from porcelain or ceramic materials, carefully designed to replicate the natural look of your teeth.
  5. Lifespan:
    • The lifespan of dental crowns can vary significantly, typically ranging between 5 to 15 years or even more. Nevertheless, their longevity hinges on several factors, such as the specific material employed and the extent of maintenance they receive.
    • Dental bridges may last 10 to 15 years or more with proper maintenance.

Which Option Is Right for You?  

Choosing between dental crowns and bridges depends on your unique dental needs and circumstances. Consider the following factors:

  1. Tooth Condition:
    • If you have a damaged or weakened tooth, a dental crown may be the best choice.
    • If you have one or more missing teeth, a dental bridge can replace them effectively.
  2. Oral Health:
    • The overall health of your nearby teeth and gums will also influence your choice.
    • Maintaining a healthy oral routine and staying up-to-date with your dental check-ups are pivotal in ensuring the lasting durability of dental crowns and bridges.
  3. Budget:
    • Cost can be a deciding factor; bridges typically cost more than crowns due to their complexity.
  4. Aesthetics: 
    • Consider the impact on your smile and facial aesthetics.
    • Both options can provide a natural appearance when done by a skilled dentist.

 How Are Dental Crowns Made?  

Understanding the dental crown fabrication process can help you appreciate the quality and durability of these restorations. Here’s a brief overview:

–       Tooth Preparation: The tooth about to receive the crown is reshaped to accommodate the crown’s placement.

–       Crafting a Perfect Fit: Your dentist skillfully takes precise impressions of the tooth that’s been prepared for a crown and the neighboring teeth. These impressions are the foundation for creating a crown tailored to your unique dental anatomy.

–       Crafting Your Crown: Skilled technicians at a dental laboratory handcraft your crown, carefully selecting the material and ensuring it perfectly matches the color of your natural teeth.

–       Temporary Crown: While our skilled team is busy crafting your one-of-a-kind permanent crown with the utmost care, we’ll provide you with a temporary crown to safeguard and maintain the health of your tooth in the interim.

–       Final Placement: Once the permanent crown is prepared, it is bonded to your prepared tooth.


In conclusion, dental crowns and bridges offer valuable solutions for various dental issues. The selection between them depends on your needs, oral health, and budget. If you’re in Brookline, MA, and looking for expert advice on dental crowns and bridges, Dental Partners of Brookline is your trusted partner for all your dental care needs. Contact us to schedule an appointment and determine which option is most beneficial for you. Your smile deserves the best care; we’re here to provide it!


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