A dental crown is an artificial cap designed to strengthen a tooth when there isn’t enough tooth tissue remaining to keep it functional. Each crown is custom designed to your specific needs and anatomy and are made of different materials but usually ceramic or porcelain. Crowns can serve as fillings, protecting a weak tooth from breaking, and may also be used to cover stained or misshapen teeth. They are designed to improve the functionality and appearance of one or several teeth.
The placement of a crown is usually a two-step, two-appointment process. Once you have penciled the appointments on the books, what can you expect during your dental crown procedure?
The First Visit
During your first appointment, your dentist will take a mold of your tooth and send it to a technician who specializes in creating crowns and other types of implants. The new crown will be designed to match the color of your teeth and provide a perfect fit. It can often be matched to the color of your teeth, so it will blend in.
On that first visit, you can expect X-ray imaging of the tooth that requires repair, as well as the bone tissue around it. The dentist will then inject a local anesthetic adjacent to the tooth to ensure you remain comfortable and pain free during the procedure.
To optimize the space for the new crown, your dentist now will file down parts of the existing tooth and create a surface on which to place the crown. If there is too much tooth area missing due to decay or damage, additional filling material will be used to build up enough structure for the crown to sit on.
After reshaping the tooth, a specially designed paste and mold tray are used to make an impression of the tooth and its surrounding area. The impression is calibrated to match the shape of your normal bite.
The initial appointment concludes with your dentist making and placing a temporary crown on the tooth to protect it and give it functionality until the final crown is inserted at the next appointment.
The process during the first visit usually lasts 60-90 minutes.
Between the Two Visits
During the time between the first visit and follow-up visits, your dentist has sent your impressions to a dental laboratory or to the in-house technician who uses the mold to make the crown. Once finished, the crown is returned to your dentist’s office in about two to three weeks.
The Follow-Up Visit
At the follow-up, the permanent crown will be placed. Your dentist will remove the temporary crown and check the new one for fit and color. Once again you receive a local anesthetic and your dentist will clean and refile the mount to remove any debris or imperfections.
Using a special adhesive, your dentist will now place the crown in its final position and allows the glue to “cure” for about 10-15 minutes, after which he will verify the fit and adhesion, and remove any extra glue from around the tooth.
To finish the procedure, your dentist carefully confirms the fit of the new crown. The surface of the crown will be filed down if necessary to perfectly match your bite.
This second follow-up visit usually will last for about an hour.
Regular, semiannual check-ups and dental cleanings are an important step toward maintaining good oral health. If you want to know more about how to improve your oral health, visit Dedicated Dental. Just as our name implies, Dedicated Dental is here to help you keep your teeth and gums healthy for a lifetime. To receive a comprehensive dental exam, call Dedicated Dental at (702) 566-5509 or visit online to request an appointment today.