Materials Used in Dental Bridges and Crowns The teeth are the strongest substance in the human body, ever harder than bone. While strong, however, this does not mean they are indestructible. The teeth put up with a lot, but they can still be faced with issues such as physical damage and decay. When these issues occur, the health and strength of the affected teeth are compromised. At Cooley Smiles, we can help to treat damaged teeth with dental crowns which are one of the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedure.
Minor damage to your teeth, which only affects the enamel layer, usually only causes cosmetic issues and does not affect your oral health. More significant damage or decay, however, can affect beyond the enamel layer of your teeth. This type of damage can compromise the integrity of the teeth, leading to the risk of further damage. It can also put the teeth at risk for developing a serious, and painful, infection.
A dental crown is a restoration designed to restore a damaged tooth. It is a cap that covers the entire visible surface of a damaged tooth, providing it with strength and protection. This allows the tooth to say in its socket, preventing the need for a tooth extraction.
Dental Crown Materials
Dental crowns can be made from one of several different materials.
|Metal. Metal crowns are strongest crowns available. The material can stand up to exceptionally strong bite forces and is practically indestructible. They also have the longest lifespan, lasting upwards of 50 years or more. While they are so strong, however, metal crowns are silver or gold in color. Many patients do not want visible crowns in their mouths, especially if the damaged tooth is more visible.
|Porcelain fused to metal. Porcelain fused to metal crowns consist of a metal base that surrounds the tooth with a porcelain coating. The metal provides the protection for your tooth while the porcelain provides aesthetics. However, a metal line often shows through at the base of the crown near the gum line, making them more noticeable.
|Ceramic. Ceramic crowns are made completely of ceramic. While not as strong as metal, ceramic crowns provide the greatest aesthetic results. The material can be colored to look exactly like the color of your surrounding teeth. It also reflects light similarly to tooth enamel. These features make it impossible to tell the difference between the restoration and your natural teeth.
What to Expect During Dental Crown Placement
The process of getting a dental crown typically takes two appointments. The first appointment involves preparing the damaged tooth and taking impressions. Preparing the tooth involves a process known as trimming. This is done under a local anesthetic. We remove a portion of the tooth enamel, reducing the damaged tooth in size. This step is crucial in ensuring that the crown fits comfortably and naturally in with the rest of your teeth. After the tooth is prepared, an impression is taken and sent to a dental lab.
It can take up to two weeks for a crown to be designed, created, and sent back. During this wait time, a temporary restoration is set into place to help protect the prepared tooth from harm. When the crown is ready, you return for your second visit. At this appointment, we check the crown for fit and bite and bond it into place on the prepared tooth.
Benefits of Dental Crowns
Dental crowns have many benefits.
|Your teeth are protected from further damage or decay.
|Bacterial invasion and infection are prevented.
|The tooth is strengthened.
|The tooth can stay in the socket, and you avoid the need for an extraction.
|Crowns can also be used following a root canal treatment or to cover dental implant screws.
If you have a tooth that is cracked, chipped, fractured, decayed, abnormally-shaped, or discolored you may also benefit from a porcelain dental veneer. Schedule a consultation to find out if the process of porcelain veneers is beneficial to you!
Dental crowns help to protect damaged teeth, preventing further harm and potential infections. If you have suffered tooth damage, call Cooley Smiles at (425) 569-4545 today.