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What to do if dental crown or bridge falls out?

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Dental crowns and bridges are unremovable dental prosthetic devices. Unlike dentures, which you can detach and clean daily, crowns and bridges are fixed onto existing teeth or implants. These are near-permanent restorations that can only be removed by a dentist. While crowns and bridges are durable, they may come loose or fall out at times. In such cases, patients do not experience much pain or discomfort, but depending on the scale of restorations, it can significantly affect how your mouth feels and functions. So, what should you do when a dental crown or bridge falls out?

As soon as you notice a loose dental crown or bridge, take it out and keep it safely in a zip-top bag. Call your dentist immediately, fix an appointment, and visit for further examination. Your dentist will check the crown and its site. Depending upon the condition of your crown and the dental site, she or he will choose whether to reinstall the same crown or to create and place a new one. If your tooth underneath is damaged, a new crown is the best option to ensure a perfect fit. If you want the treatment process to get completed on the same day, ask your dentist for CEREC crowns. Otherwise, you will need to wear a temporary crown until your dentist gets a newly customized one from a dental lab. Similarly, it takes new bridges to fix abutment teeth that are too compromised or unrestorable. 

What are the reasons for a loose crown tooth?

There are several reasons why dental crowns come loose and fall off.

  • Improper fit or substandard quality make dental crowns wobbly within a few years. They cannot withstand the bite force because of the imperfect fit and/or quality. 
  • Short teeth or worn-out rear teeth that do not provide enough structure to adequately hold a crown.
  • The dental cement may deterioration, losing its bonding quality.
  • Grinding one’s teeth can losen crowns. Some patient may be grinding their teeth while sleep without knowing it.
  • The tooth may decay because of improper oral hygiene or, in rare cases, inadequate cleaning before placing a dental crown.

Why do dental bridges loosen?

Usually, bridgework fails due to recurring decay or leakage of bacteria under the crowns on the abutment teeth. A fractured abutment tooth also causes a dental bridge to fall out.

How to prevent the loosening of crowns and bridges?

Improper fit and quality of dental crown and bridges, as well as weakened dental cement, requires medical intervention. Otherwise, being proactive about taking care of your crown or bridge can make a big difference. Remember the following to ensure the longevity of dental restorations.

  • If possible, avoid sticky foods. Otherwise, eat such foods carefully.
  • Do not chew ice or foods that are hard to chew
  • Brush and floss your teeth twice a day daily
  • Use an interdental brush as it helps remove plaque.
  • Wear a mouthguard if you grind your teeth while sleep. Your dentist will be able to tell if this is the case.
  • Consult a dentist if you feel any discomfort at the dental crown or bridge site

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