Dental crowns are tooth-shaped caps designed to completely cover a tooth to the gum line. When a tooth becomes fractured, decayed, or worn down, porcelain dental crowns can strengthen and stabilize the tooth. They can also be used to cosmetically enhance individual teeth. The high-quality porcelain crowns we provide at our Montreal, QC, practice are virtually indistinguishable from your surrounding teeth. Durable and stain-resistant with a lifelike sheen, they look and feel completely natural.
Porcelain Dental Crowns: An Overview
Porcelain crowns serve many purposes. They can be used as a cosmetic dentistry solution to cover worn or discolored teeth, or as a reconstructive dentistry treatment to strengthen teeth following treatment for trauma or decay. They can also be used in conjunction with a dental bridge to fill in gaps left by missing teeth.
If you are missing a tooth, a dental crown can be combined with a dental implant to completely replace the tooth. By design, an implant-supported crown is nearly identical to a traditional crown. The difference is that an implant-supported crown is attached to a dental implant rather than a natural tooth. This is beneficial for a couple of reasons.
In addition to restoring health and function, porcelain crowns offer an aesthetically pleasing outcome.
First, an implant-supported crown does not require the removal of natural tooth enamel. Therefore, all healthy tooth structure is left intact, reducing the risk for problems later on. Secondly, dental implants replace missing tooth roots and stimulate the jaw in the same way natural roots do. For this reason, a dental implant and crown are often recommended over a traditional dental bridge for single tooth replacement.
Same-day Porcelain Crowns
At Smile Montreal, we offer same-day crowns for qualifying patients using E4D CAD/CAM technology. Instead of sending your case to a dental laboratory for the fabrication of your crown, we can craft a custom restoration while you wait. This eliminates a second appointment and reduces the overall cost of treatment. During your initial consultation, Dr. Casey can determine if a same-day crown is right for you.
Placing Dental Crowns
The porcelain crown treatment process may take one or two visits to our office, depending on your unique needs. The general steps of the procedure include:
- Anesthesia: Before your treatment, local anesthesia is administered to numb the affected tooth and surrounding tissues. Patients with extreme dental anxiety may also benefit from sedation dentistry to calm their nerves and increase comfort.
- Tooth preparation: Dr. Casey will reshape the tooth to create a proper base for the crown. Any decayed or damaged portions will be removed during this step.
- Impressions: Once the tooth has been treated, we will take impressions that will be used to guide the technicians at our partner lab. We will also provide the lab with specific instructions for matching the color of your crown to your teeth. (Patients who qualify for same-day crowns will receive their restoration during the same appointment.)
- Temporary crown: If your crown is being fabricated by the dental laboratory, Dr. Casey will bond a temporary crown into place to protect the tooth until your final restoration is complete.
- Fabrication of final crown: Generally, it takes about two to three weeks for a lab technician to craft your custom crown. (Same-day crowns will be fabricated onsite using our in-office milling machine for eligible patients.)
- Placement of final restoration: Once your porcelain crown has been created, Dr. Casey will assess the fit and bond your new restoration into place. The result is an attractive, fully functional smile.
Benefits of Porcelain Crowns
Dental crowns provide a number of functional and cosmetic benefits. The advantages in terms of oral health and aesthetics are discussed in detail below.
Oral Health Benefits
Following treatment for trauma or decay, teeth need structural support. Otherwise, the tooth would not be able to withstand the pressure of chewing. Porcelain crowns can:
- Eliminate discomfort: If a decayed or damaged tooth has caused significant discomfort or tenderness, a crown can protect the tooth and alleviate these side effects.
- Improve chewing function: It can be difficult, and even painful, to chew using a damaged tooth. Once your final crown is placed, it will restore your bite to full function, allowing you to eat your favorite foods with confidence.
- Bring balance to your bite: For optimal health, bite forces should be equalized across your teeth. When a tooth is damaged, decayed, or misshaped, it can interfere with this balance, placing excessive pressure on certain areas. Placing a crown can restore balance and equalize bite forces.
- Reduce wear and tear on adjacent teeth: Crowns can address tooth erosion, which is often the result of teeth grinding. When bonded into place, porcelain crowns can modify the shape and size of the teeth, effectively restoring those that have been worn down over time. If you are considering crowns to conceal worn teeth, we recommend investing in a night guard to protect your smile.
- Be easily maintained: Fortunately, crowns can be cleaned just like natural teeth. To maintain them, brush at least twice a day with non-abrasive toothpaste and a soft-bristled brush and floss once daily.
In addition to restoring health and function, porcelain crowns offer an aesthetically pleasing outcome. For example, porcelain crowns:
- Blend with your natural teeth for an attractive result
- Reflect light similarly to natural tooth enamel
- Restore symmetry and balance to a smile
- Offer incredible durability
- Can improve self-esteem and confidence
Caring for Your Dental Crown
Crowns are durable, and with proper care, you can expect them to last many years. With a crown in place, you should continue to brush and floss every day, but you should modify your flossing technique to pull the floss from front to back within the gap, rather than up and down. You should also avoid biting or chewing hard or sticky foods with your crown. During your biannual examinations, we can assess the condition of your crown.
Schedule Your Appointment at Smile Montreal
If you have experienced tooth decay, trauma, or the loss of a tooth, porcelain crowns are a highly effective solution that can help your smile look great and function properly. Contact the friendly team at Smile Montreal to schedule your visit. Call the office at (514) 937-6558 or send us a message today.
“I felt more like I was talking to a friend than I was to a dentist.” Nancy Lanzolla, Former Patient