Porcelain crowns

Frequently asked questions about porcelain crowns

A crown is a reconstruction that covers a tooth to restore it to its normal shape and size, strengthening and improving the aspect of a tooth. Crowns are necessary when a tooth is generally destroyed and fillings will not solve this problem. If a tooth is cracked a crown holds the tooth together, filling the cracks, so the damage does not get worse. Crowns are also used to support large fillings when there is not enough tooth surface attached to the dental bridge, to protect a weaker tooth from fracturing, to restore fractured teeth, or to cover malformed or discolored teeth.

When we prepare the tooth for a crown, the tooth is reduced so the crown can fit over it. An impression of the teeth and gums is made and sent to the laboratory for the crown preparation. A temporary crown is fitted over the tooth until the permanent crown is made. On the next visit, the dentist removes the temporary crown and cements the permanent crown on the tooth.

Crowns require more tooth structure removal; therefore, they cover more of the tooth than veneers. Crowns are fixed and are customarily indicated for teeth that have sustained significant loss of structure, or to replace a missing tooth. Crowns may be placed on natural teeth or dental implants.

At present, cosmetic dentistry offers options beyond having a partial denture. One option is to have an implant and crown placed. An implant is a titanium cylinder that is placed in the bone (under the tissue) and functions as substitute for what was once the root of the tooth. After a period of 3-6 months the structure to be placed over the abutment is done. This tooth is now cared like any other tooth in your mouth. Another option is a dental bridge.

As soon as you are seated on the dental chair, we will numb the area to be worked on using a local anesthetic. Depending on the type of local anesthetic used, you can expect to feel numb for one or two hours. If your anesthesia should last longer, do not be concerned. Individuals react differently to anesthesia. While the area is numb, please be careful not to bite your lip or tongue. You may want to consider a soft diet or no meal at all until your sensation returns in the affected area. Once the appropriate area is numb, one of our dentists will prepare the tooth to maximize the function, retention and aesthetics of your new crown. After the tooth is fully prepared, we proceed to the shaping stage when we create a temporary tooth prepared in lab and fitted especially for you. Meanwhile the dentist takes an impression of the prosthetic area to be restored and sends the impression along with shape and color specifications to our internal lab to fabricate the permanent crow.
Should you experience any discomfort you can take a mild analgesic (Tylenol or aspirin, etc.) as long as there is no medical contraindication based upon your medical history. You can take any medication for headache. If the discomfort persists, please call our clinic.

To prevent harming or fracturing the crowns, avoid chewing hard foods, ice cream – just like you should avoid for your natural teeth. You should also avoid teeth grinding. Besides sessions in our clinic and brushing your teeth twice a day, cleaning between your teeth is vital with crowns. Dental floss or interdental cleaning products (specially shaped brushes and sticks) are important tools to remove plaque from the crown area where the gum meets the tooth. Plaque in this area can cause decays and gum diseases.

Frequently asked questions about dental bridges

A dental bridge is a false tooth, also known as artificial tooth, which is usually fused between two porcelain crowns to fill the space left by a missing tooth. The two crowns sustaining it are attached onto the teeth on each side of the false tooth. This is known as a fixed dental bridge. This cosmetic method is used to replace one or more missing teeth. Fixed dental bridges can not be removed from the mouth like denture. Dental bridges can reduce the risk of gum disease, correct bite problems and even improve your speech. Dental bridges require serious oral hygiene and can last around 7 years or more.

Yes. If you are an appropriate candidate, a porcelain bridge can look as natural as your own teeth (in many cases even better), in terms of color, shape, proportion and teeth alignment.
All reconstructions using porcelain dental bridges are what we chose to use unless there is a compelling reason otherwise. Again, when properly placed, they are as strong as or even stronger than natural teeth. The appearance can be identical to a natural tooth, allowing light to pass through (we refer to translucency).

If you have one or more missing teeth and have good oral hygiene, you should discuss these procedures with your dentist. If spaces are left opened, they may cause the surrounding teeth to modify their position. Moreover, the space between missing teeth can cause your other teeth and your gum to become more sensitive to tooth decay and gum diseases.

We prepare your teeth to create the necessary space for the porcelain tooth. We will administer you a mild anesthetic to numb the area, and then remove a part from each abutment (teeth sustaining the work) to make up for the thickness of the crown. When these teeth have already been polished, they may be used as foundation for the crown. Our dental laboratory will make a temporary dental bridge for you to wear until your dental bridge is made until your next appointment. This temporary dental bridge will protect your teeth and gums. On your second visit, the temporary bridge will be removed. Your new permanent dental bridge will be placed, checked and adjusted to remove bite discrepancies. Your new dental bridge will then be cemented to your teeth.

Yes. There are several types of dental bridges, of which the most used are:
1.Traditional fixed dental bridge – A dental bridge is a false tooth, also known as artificial tooth, which is usually fused between two porcelain crowns to fill the space left by a missing tooth. The two crowns sustaining it are attached onto the teeth on each side of the false tooth. This is known as a fixed dental bridge. This method is used to replace one or more missing teeth. Fixed dental bridges can not be removed from the mouth like denture.
2.Cantilever Bridges – In areas of your mouth that are under less stress, such as your front teeth, a cantilever bridge may be used. Cantilever bridges are used when there are teeth on only one side of the open space. This procedure involves anchoring the false tooth to one side of one or more natural or adjacent teeth.

The advantages include that dental bridges have a natural aspect and usually require two appointments. If you maintain an appropriate oral hygiene, your fixed dental bridges should last approximately 7-10 years or more. Some of the disadvantages of having a dental bridge include that for a few weeks after the treatment your teeth will be sensitive to differences of temperature. The bacteria formed from food acids on your teeth and gums can cause infections if proper oral hygiene is not followed.