Preparing teeth for dental crowns involves more than just ensuring a perfect fit. The dentist will work to preserve as much of the original tooth as possible, which will keep the overall structure strong and durable while working with a crown to provide the functional and aesthetic effects within the mouth. This also helps retain the gum tissue, making it easier for patients to feel comfortable and confident in the dental crown and overall usability of the tooth.
Dental crowns can be used for cosmetic purposes, to make a tooth more attractive. They are also used for functional purposes, providing the size, strength, and support for that tooth when the underlying tooth is damaged or insufficient. Dental crowns are used to cap dental implants, replacing a tooth entirely, and they are also used to cover and protect an underlying tooth that may be sensitive or in need of reinforcement, such as after a root canal or large filling.
After the dentist has prepared the underlying tooth by performing a root canal, filling a cavity, replacing a filling, or preserving a broken or damaged tooth, an impression is often made to allow the dental laboratory to custom design a crown for an individual patient. To allow room for a crown to be placed over an existing tooth, without creating unnecessary pressure on adjacent teeth, the dentist will prepare the surface of the tooth by sanding or filing to make the tooth smaller. This is often down with a box-like shape to make the inner-portion of the crown easier to design.
Using special tools, the dentist files away the outer surfaces of the tooth, creating the shape that will fit into the crown like interlocking puzzle pieces. An impression is taken and a model of the tooth and adjacent teeth is made from the cast of the impression. This is used to design the crown, which is often made with a ceramic composition and glazed to protect and appear like tooth enamel. A temporary crown is often placed over the shaped and prepared tooth to protect in the meantime. For more details and information about dental crowns and procedures, contact our skilled dentist today!