Crowns are more and more frequently placed in order to protect teeth and maintain function. This function could be aesthetic (appearance) or structural (chewing).
But Why Is a Crown Necessary?
Crowns are needed for several reasons. You might have had a very large cavity or a root canal and the amount of tooth structure that is left might be small. Without the crown protecting the rest of the tooth, a fracture could develop, which would require the extraction of the tooth. The location and size of the filling needed determine whether the dentists can fill the tooth or whether a crown is needed. After a root canal, the tooth is hollowed out, and it is predisposed to cracking without the protection that a crown gives. Often a crown is placed if the likelihood of further breakage is great. That cannot often be determined until after the dentist sees how large and where your root chambers are located since that can vary from person to person and tooth to tooth.
Sometimes there is a crack in the tooth or a cusp of the tooth has broken off. Depending on the location and depth of the crack, a crown can be used to maintain the life of the rest of the tooth. Our goal is to preserve the integrity of as much of your tooth as possible for as long as possible.
A Crown in One Visit?
Unlike most practices where a crown requires multiple visits, at Library Park Dental, Dr. Chiappetta and Dr. Haugstad can fabricate a customized porcelain crown for you in just one visit! Our dentists have received extensive training in CEREC technology. In fact, Dr. Chiappetta has taught dentists from all over the country how to use this specialized technology.
After preparing your tooth, high precision digital photography is used to take thousands of tiny pictures of your prepared tooth, surrounding teeth, and how your upper and lower jaws meet. A computer uses advanced CAD software to create a proposal for a crown. The dentists can then adjust the proposal to make sure that the new crown is a perfect fit. The directions for the crown are sent to a milling device here in the office. The crown is milled out of a block of solid porcelain that is chosen to match the shade of your teeth.
The crown is then bonded to the prepared surface, giving you a durable, attractive restoration in just one visit.
Are Lab Crowns Ever Needed?
While we endeavor to make getting a crown as fast and as easy as possible for you, there are times where we will have to still use a lab fabricated crown and you will have to return for another visit. Often that is due to the location of the crown. The rear molars often do not have enough room for the camera needed for the CEREC process. Sometimes if a person already has an issue with clenching a full gold crown on a molar would be the prudent choice. The dentists sometimes may decide at other times that a lab crown is needed, based on the individual case, but at all times will discuss the various options and the rationale for their choice with you.
There are times that lab crowns are used because of spaces between teeth or other undesirable appearance issues such as shape or color of the teeth. We do smile makeovers where a few well-placed crowns can completely change and improve your smile!
At Library Park Dental, we want to extend the life of your teeth. If a crown is needed, we will show you why we recommend it. Contact us today if you have any questions about crowns or are interested in how crowns can improve your smile.