You want your teeth to last a lifetime, but sadly, that’s not the case for a lot of people. Even with our high standard of dental care, by age 50, the average American has lost an average of 12 teeth.
But today’s dentistry allows practitioners to partially or fully restore missing or damaged teeth with new and stronger materials. One of the most common procedures is the dental crown, which protects the portion of the tooth that shows above the gum line.
At Riverdale Dental Arts, Dr. Sheldon Kupferman and his staff are dental crown experts, fashioning natural-looking replacements for missing teeth and restoring oral health to their patients in Riverdale, the Bronx, New York. Here’s what you need to know about crowns and their placement.
Research indicates that the damage to your oral health increases with each additional missing tooth. Some problems include:
Dental crowns can help mitigate these problems by providing an artificial tooth that closes the gap.
A crown is a “cap” that’s secured atop a damaged tooth, one that has a large filling, one that’s had a root canal, or on an abutment following a dental implant. It strengthens the remaining tooth structure and improves its appearance, alignment, and shape. When attached over an implant, it provides the biting surface needed to stimulate jawbone growth and keeps the jaw healthy. Crowns can also be used to support a dental bridge.
Crowns are most often made from:
Metal alloys are generally stronger than porcelain, but they’re often recommended only for back teeth because of their color. Porcelain can be shaded to look like a natural tooth, and it’s often bonded to a metal shell for front teeth because the bonding gives it extra strength.
Crowns take two appointments to place. The first appointment involves planning and preparation of the tooth. Dr. Kupferman examines your teeth manually, and he may order X-rays to get a better picture of your tooth and bone structure. He may also take a digital impression of your mouth using the state-of-the-art PlanmecaⓇ platform.
Next, Dr. Kupferman prepares the tooth that will receive the crown. He gives you a local anesthetic so you won’t feel a thing, then files down a small portion of the outer enamel to make room for the dental crown.
Then, he takes a new set of digital impressions to send to the outside lab that will manufacture the crown. He places a temporary crown on the prepared tooth to hold you over until the crown comes back from the lab.
At your second appointment, the doctor places the crown, and you’re good to go!
If you have missing or damaged teeth, a dental crown can help preserve your oral health. To learn more, or to set up a consultation with Dr. Kupferman, contact Riverdale Dental Arts by calling the office at 718-548-1148, or book online with us today.