Over time teeth that have received large fillings can begin to weaken and become more susceptible to problems such as decay, cracks, discoloration, and so forth. In these situations, crowns can restore your tooth to its original strength and function, preserve the tooth long term, and bring your smile back to the look of what it once was.
Sometimes just placing another filling in a tooth can weaken it to the point that the next time it breaks you could lose the tooth. Crowns are a great solution for weakened teeth and with modern materials crowns are the longest lasting dental restoration available. Most crowns made today will last dental patients for the rest of their lives.
Our crowns are constructed using from computer aided designed and milling techniques for high accuracy and impeccable fit. As a material, we prefer the high strength Zirconium ceramic. But we have a variety of ceramics each tailored to your individualized need.
At this time our highest strength crowns are just beginning to be available as a “same day crown.” The technology is developing rapidly and Dr. French is watching and studying the options for bringing this technology to our office. In the past 10 years, “same day crowns” have not been made out of the Zirconium ceramic and unfortunately the failure rate has been higher than what Dr. French has been willing to accept.
At our office getting your new crown will take 2 appointments.
In the first appointment we remove any existing decay or old restorations and replace it with the most recent materials and bonding agents thus giving the remaining tooth structure all the strength possible. We then reduce to tooth down to the proper contours.
Last year we invested in a wonderful piece of technology called a Trios Digital Scanner made by our friends in Denmark. (Go Legos!) The digital scanner uses an intraoral camera to take thousands of pictures of your tooth or teeth in seconds and stitch them together into a digital model. We then send this data over the internet to our lab which uses the information to construct your crown. This takes about a week. When you return we will check the fit, finish and shade of your new crown. If everything is satisfactory we then cement your crown permanently and you shouldn’t have to worry about that tooth again.
The fit of these crowns is fantastic—better than anything Dr. French has seen over the course of his career. The materials are also highly biocompatible and we see less inflammation or reaction from the gums than we did in the past when gold and porcelain fused to metal crowns were the norm.
One final benefit of the scanner for you as a patient is that we don’t need to take all of the impressions that we used to have to take. In other words, we are able to eschew the goo!