The Steps During a Dental Crown Procedure
Dental crowns, sometimes called tooth caps, are protective coverings placed over a tooth to improve its appearance or protect and restore its function after it suffers significant damage. The process of getting a dental crown is straightforward; however, there could be slight differences or adjustments based on patient preference. This article covers what happens during a dental crown procedure.
The dental crown procedure
Two dental appointments are usually required. Before discussing a dental crown procedure, the dentist will need to examine the patient’s teeth to know if a crown is necessary. Sometimes, a tooth may be too damaged to hold a crown. In other cases, additional procedures, such as a root canal, may be required before placing the crown.
Next, the dentist will examine and prepare the affected tooth. They may take X-rays of the tooth and supporting bone to check for signs of decay or injury to the tooth’s pulp. A root canal treatment for cleaning out the tooth pulp (containing blood vessels, connective tissues and nerves) will occur first before placing the crown.
To prepare the tooth for the crown, the dentist will numb the tooth and nearby gum tissues. This is not always important, especially if the tooth nerves have been removed, but it makes the patient more comfortable. For the crown to fit, the affected tooth will have its structure filed down on all sides.
The extent of filing depends on the type of crown to be used. Full metal crowns are thinner and do not require removing as much tooth structure as full porcelain or porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns. If a significant portion of the tooth is lost because of damage or decay, a composite material will be used to rebuild the tooth’s structure for the crown.
Impressions and a temporary crown
After trimming the tooth, the dentist will take impressions of the patient’s bite. Traditional impressions are taken with a putty-like material that the patient bites into. the impressions are then sent to a dental lab that will produce the crown. A shade guide will be used to ensure the crown blends in well with the patient's natural teeth.
Before the crown is ready, the dentist will place a temporary crown made from resin or metal material over the tooth. The temporary crown protects the tooth and will be removed when it is time to place the permanent crown. Patients need to be careful when wearing the temporary crown, as it is less stable. It is advisable to avoid hard and sticky foods and to chew on another side of the mouth.
Placing the final crown
During the second appointment, the dentist will apply local anesthetic if necessary, but the procedure is usually painless. The dentist will take off the temporary crown and clean the tooth. The fit of the permanent crown will be checked to ensure no further adjustments are necessary. When satisfied, the dental professional will bond the crown permanently over the tooth.
Placing dental crowns is a straightforward process. After completing the process, the general dentist will provide instructions for aftercare and maintenance. If you have additional questions about the procedure, book an appointment for a consultation.
Request an appointment here: https://www.belairdentalassociates.com or call Belair Dental Associates at (706) 426-5520 for an appointment in our Evans office.
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