For Crowns, Bridges, and Veneers

Informed Consent for Crown and Bridge Prosthetics

I have been advised of and understand that treatment of dental conditions requiring crowns and/or fixed bridgework, involves certain risks and possible unsuccessful results, including the possibility of failure. Even when care and diligence is exercised in the treatment of conditions requiring crowns and bridgework and fabrication of the same, there are no promises or guarantees of anticipated results or the length of time the crown and/or fixed bridgework will last. I agree to assume the risks associated with crowns and/or fixed bridgework, which include but are not limited to the following:

1. Reduction of tooth structure

To replace decayed or otherwise traumatized teeth, it is necessary to modify the existing tooth or teeth so that crowns (caps) and/or bridges may be placed upon them. Tooth preparation will be done as conservatively as practical, but I understand that normally at least some of my existing tooth structure will be removed.

2. Numbness following use of anesthesia

In preparation of teeth for crowns or bridges, anesthetics are usually needed. As a result of the injection or use of anesthesia, at times there may be swelling, jaw muscle tenderness or even a resultant numbness of the tongue, lips, teeth, jaws and/or facial tissues that is usually temporary; in rare instances, such numbness may be permanent.

3. Sensitivity of teeth

Often, after the preparation of teeth for the reception of either crowns or bridges, the teeth may exhibit mild to severe sensitivity. This sensitivity may last only for a short period of time or for a much longer period. If it is persistent, notify us so that we can determine the cause of the sensitivity and seek to treat that condition.

4. Crown or bridge abutment teeth may require root canal treatment

After being crowned, teeth may develop a condition known as pulpitis or pulpal degeneration. The tooth or teeth may have been traumatized from an accident, deep decay, extensive preparation for the crown or bridge, or from other causes. It may be necessary to do root canal treatments on the affected teeth. If teeth remain sensitive for long periods of time following crowning, root canal treatment may be necessary. Infrequently, the tooth or teeth may abscess or otherwise not heal, which may require root canal treatment, root surgery or possibly extraction.

5. Breakage

Crowns and bridges may chip or break. Many factors can contribute to this situation, including chewing excessively hard materials, change in biting forces, traumatic blows to the mouth, etc. Undetectable cracks may develop in crowns from these causes, but the crowns/bridges themselves may not actually break until sometime later. Breakage or chipping because of defective materials or construction is somewhat uncommon. If it does occur, it usually occurs soon after placement.

6. Uncomfortable or strange feeling

Crowns and bridges are artificial and therefore feel different from natural teeth. Most patients become accustomed to this feeling over time. In limited situations, muscle soreness or tenderness of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) — jaw joint — may persist for indeterminable periods of time, following placement of the prosthesis.

7. Aesthetics or appearance

Patients will be given the opportunity to observe the appearance of crowns or bridges in place, prior to final cementation. While satisfactory, this fact is usually acknowledged by an entry into the patient’s chart, initialed by the patient.

8. Longevity of crowns and bridges

Many variables determine how long crowns and bridges can be expected to last. Among these are some of the factors mentioned in the preceding paragraphs, including the general health of the patient, oral hygiene, regular dental checkups and diet. As a result, no guarantees can be made or assumed to be made regarding the longevity of the crowns or bridges.

It is a patient’s responsibility to seek attention from the dentist should any undue or unexpected problems occur. The patient must diligently follow any and all instruction, including the scheduling of and attendance at all appointments. Failure to keep the cementation appointment can result in ultimate failure of the crown/bridge to fit properly, and an additional fee may be assessed.

Post-Op Instructions

Following Tooth Preparation:

  • Sensitivity and tenderness of the tooth and surrounding gums is common for the first day or two after a tooth has been prepared for a
    restoration. If the tenderness or sensitivity lasts longer than this, please contact our office.
  • If anesthesia is used, avoid chewing, biting, and eating until the numbness wears off.
  • The final restoration may be placed the same day that the tooth is prepared or may be placed during a separate appointment.

For Temporary Restorations:

  • Eat softer foods, and avoid foods that are particularly crunchy, chewy, or hard.
  • Carefully clean around the restoration, brushing and flossing daily. Be gentle when flossing, taking extra care not to loosen the
    temporary restoration. Slowly pulling the floss out by one end can help avoid putting too much pressure on the temporary.
  • If the temporary restoration becomes loose or breaks, please call us immediately.

After Final Restoration Placement:

  • Avoid chewing on hard, crunchy, or sticky foods for 24 hours in order to give time for the cement to fully bond.
  • Mild sensitivity to hot or cold foods is not unusual and should dissipate after a few weeks. If sensitivity lasts more than six weeks,
    please let the office know.

Ongoing Care:

  • Proper care of your restoration includes brushing your teeth after every meal and snack, and flossing at least once a day before
  • Rinsing your mouth with water or mouthwash with also help to remove any additional particles that may have been missed during
    brushing and flossing.

Please call our office if you are in pain or have any questions regarding your treatment.