My Dentistry Blog
Posts for: September, 2018
Dental crowns are an essential means for restoring damaged or unattractive teeth. A well-crafted crown not only functions well, it looks and blends seamlessly with the rest of the natural teeth.
Crowns are artificial caps that cover an entire visible tooth, often used for heavily decayed or damaged teeth or as added protection after a root canal treatment. Most crowns are produced by a dental lab, but some dentists are now creating them in-office with computer-based milling equipment. On the whole, the various crowns now available function adequately as teeth—but they can vary in their appearance quality.
In the early to mid 20th Century the all-metal crown was the standard; but while durable, it could be less than eye-pleasing. Although more life-like dental porcelain existed at the time, it tended to be brittle and could easily shatter under chewing stress.
Dentists then developed a crown that combined the strength of metal with the attractiveness of porcelain: the porcelain fused to metal or PFM crown. The PFM crown had a hollow, metal substructure that was cemented over the tooth. To this metal base was fused an outer shell of porcelain that gave the crown an attractive finish.
The PFM reigned as the most widely used crown until the mid 2000s. By then improved forms of porcelain reinforced with stronger materials like Lucite had made possible an all-ceramic crown. They’re now the most common crown used today, beautifully life-like yet durable without the need for a metal base.
All-ceramics may be the most common type of crown installed today, but past favorites’ metal and PFM are still available and sometimes used. So depending on the type and location of the tooth and your own expectations, there’s a right crown for you.
However, not all crowns even among all-ceramic have the same level of aesthetic quality or cost—the more life-like, the more expensive. If you have dental insurance, your plan’s benefits might be based on a utilitarian but less attractive crown. You may have to pay more out of pocket for the crown you and your dentist believe is best for you.
Whatever you choose, though, your modern dental crown will do an admirable, functional job. And it can certainly improve your natural tooth’s appearance.
Dental crowns are one of the most reliable and versatile dental restorations available. They can be used to correct a number of common problems like severe tooth decay and cosmetic damage. Crowns are also used to replace missing teeth through a dental bridge. The dentists at Colonial Dental Group, Dr. Alexander Quezada and Dr. David Lewis Jr., offer cosmetic and general dentistry services for pediatric and adult patients in Glenview, IL.
Dental Crowns and Restorations in Glenview, IL
Crowns restore tooth structure and can strengthen a weak or fractured tooth. The dentist may recommend a dental crown when a cavity is too large to fill with a standard dental filling. Crowns are also known as caps because they literally cover a damaged tooth. Dental crowns can also be used to cover broken and cracked teeth or to fix significant cosmetic damage like stains and discolorations or uneven/misshaped teeth.
How Dental Crowns Work
Each crown is custom designed to look and feel as close to a natural tooth as possible. Modern dental crowns are typically made from porcelain, or a combination of materials like metal and porcelain and other dental ceramics. Traditional crowns usually require at least two separate appointments. On the first visit, the dentist will take a physical impression of the tooth which is used to design the crown. The impression is then sent off to an outside lab where the crown is manufactured (you will get a temporary crown while you wait).
Depending on the condition of the damaged tooth, the dentist may reshape it to fit the new crown. Once the crown is ready, it is cemented in place and your smile is as good as new.
CEREC Same Day Crowns
Don't want to wait to get your crowns? Colonial Dental Group offers CEREC same day crowns, which use digital technology and computer imaging to design and produce the crown onsite at the dentist's office while you wait.
Find a Dentist in Glenview, IL
For more information about dental crowns and other cosmetic and restorative dentistry options, contact Colonial Dental Group today by calling (847) 729-2233 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Quezada or Dr. Lewis.
The basics for treating tooth decay have changed little since the father of modern dentistry Dr. G.V. Black developed them in the early 20th Century. Even though technical advances have streamlined treatment, our objectives are the same: remove any decayed material, prepare the cavity and then fill it.
This approach has endured because it works—dentists practicing it have preserved billions of teeth. But it has had one principle drawback: we often lose healthy tooth structure while removing decay. Although we preserve the tooth, its overall structure may be weaker.
But thanks to recent diagnostic and treatment advances we’re now preserving more of the tooth structure during treatment than ever before. On the diagnostic front enhanced x-ray technology and new magnification techniques are helping us find decay earlier when there’s less damaged material to remove and less risk to healthy structure.
Treating cavities has likewise improved with the increased use of air abrasion, an alternative to drilling. Emitting a concentrated stream of fine abrasive particles, air abrasion is mostly limited to treating small cavities. Even so, dentists using it say they’re removing less healthy tooth structure than with drilling.
While these current advances have already had a noticeable impact on decay treatment, there’s more to come. One in particular could dwarf every other advance with its impact: a tooth repairing itself through dentin regeneration.
This futuristic idea stems from a discovery by researchers at King’s College, London experimenting with Tideglusib, a medication for treating Alzheimer’s disease. The researchers placed tiny sponges soaked with the drug into holes drilled into mouse teeth. After a few weeks the holes had filled with dentin, produced by the teeth themselves.
Dentin regeneration isn’t new, but methods to date haven’t been able to produce enough dentin to repair a typical cavity. Tideglusib has proven more promising, and it’s already being used in clinical trials. If its development continues to progress, patients’ teeth may one day repair their own cavities without a filling.
Dr. Black’s enduring concepts continue to define tooth decay treatment. But developments now and on the horizon are transforming how we treat this disease in ways the father of modern dentistry couldn’t imagine.