The Difference Between a Dental Crown and Bridge

If you’ve got missing teeth, you may have considered crowns or bridges, but what’s the difference? Both are fixed prosthetic devices that can restore the structure of your smile. A crown and bridge are often grouped together, however, they are not interchangeable. 

At Whitehorse Dental we take the time to get to know our patients so we can offer the best treatment to fix each individual problem. In this article, we discuss the difference between a dental crown and bridge.

How do crowns work?

Crowns are prosthetic caps that can be used to strengthen damaged or decayed teeth. They can also be used to top off a dental implant or cover up a badly discoloured tooth. Crowns can be made from a variety of materials. Porcelain and resin crowns can be colour matched to your existing smile. Gold and other metal crowns tend to be the strongest, but the colour makes them apparent.

How do bridges work?

Bridges are solely used to replace one or more missing teeth. They get their name because of how they work. The missing tooth is replaced with a prosthetic tooth that is attached to a crown on either end. These crowns attach to an existing tooth on either side of the gap, creating a bridge-like structure. The reason they are often grouped in with crowns is that you cannot have a bridge without a crown. On the other hand, you can have a crown without a bridge.

Which one is better for me?

Hopefully, you’re not too confused! The difference between a crown and a bridge can be a little tricky to wrap your head around. The basic rule of thumb is that bridges are only used to replace missing teeth. While crowns are used over an existing tooth or implant to either reinforce its structure or fix the appearance. It’s always best to speak to your dentist when wondering which device to get. They can offer you professional advice tailored to your specific circumstances.

What are the benefits of dental crowns and bridges?

While both have different uses, the benefits are quite similar:


Having missing or damaged teeth can make you feel self-conscious. Everyone should be able to feel confident and happy flashing their smile. Both crowns and bridges can bring back that confidence. Each can be colour matched to your existing teeth and offer a seamless transition. They are made to look natural and symmetrical. This means no one can tell the difference.


When you have missing teeth, ordinary tasks like eating and talking can become difficult. A bridge can fix that, the structure of your smile can be restored, and you can go back to normal life. Having damaged teeth can be painful whilst also negatively affecting your oral health. Crowns can fix your teeth and restore their strength.


Both crowns and bridges are made from sturdy materials that can last many years with the right care. They are one of the most long-lasting treatments for a tooth, which means you don’t need to worry about them slipping or moving – like dentures might. As long as you maintain a good oral care routine you can enjoy the benefits from both crowns and bridges for years to come.

How to take care of a dental crown or bridge

You should treat your crown or bridge the same as you would your other teeth. This means keeping up a good oral care routine:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes
  • Floss or use interdental brushes (e.g., Piksters) once a day
  • Use a fluoride-based toothpaste
  • Visit your dentist for  check-ups at least twice a year
  • Eat a balanced diet (try to limit sugar)
  • Avoid damaging habits such as smoking

Whitehorse Dental is here to help

So, now that you know the difference between a dental crown and bridge the next step is speaking to your dentist. At Whitehorse Dental we use the latest technology to provide you with the best possible dental crowns and bridges. Our team of friendly dentists are gentle and attentive, we always listen to your needs. Call us to book an appointment today.