Dental Tips Blog


What to Do if You Lose a Crown

Posted in Crowns

It’s frustrating when a dental crown pops off. If it’s a temporary, at least that’s not a huge deal. You can stick that back on by yourself with a little dental cement from the drugstore. But it can be a bit scarier when a permanent crown comes off.

Here’s what you can do if that happens:

  1. Recover Your Crown

Try to salvage your crown from that bite of cheeseburger you lost it in. Clean it up well. Examine your tooth and the inside of the crown for any pieces of broken tooth.

  1. Try it Back On

See if you can put the crown back on your tooth without swallowing it. Don’t force it if it won’t go on easily – it could be backwards. If you can find its original position, then you’ll be able to put it back on with confidence.

  1. Recement (Or Pack It Up)

It’s a good idea to recement your crown (using that temporary drugstore cement mentioned earlier) if you know it’ll be a couple days before seeing a dentist. That way, you’ll keep your tooth protected and won’t lose track of your crown.

Otherwise, put the crown in a safe place. Don’t bite on the uncrowned tooth. If it’s sensitive, wrap it in a piece of chewed-up sugar-free gum.

  1. When It’s Lost for Good

If your crown ends up gone for good, you’ll have to talk with your dentist about replacing it. An old crown may be covered by your insurance.

Call your dentist as soon as you discover a loose or missing crown. Putting it off could be bad for your exposed tooth.

Posted on behalf of:
Smiles for Centreville
14245-P Centreville Square
Centreville, VA 20121


What Is the Core Buildup of a Dental Crown?

Posted in Crowns

A dental crown is a hollow cap that’s shaped like a tooth. Inside, it’s got an empty space that fits right over the top of a tooth. So in order to support a crown, teeth have to be trimmed to the right shape. Otherwise, the crown would be too bulky.

When You Need More Than A Crown

On occasion, a tooth might be too damaged by decay or fracture to support a crown. It might have lost a lot of structure to large old fillings. In order to keep the tooth strong, your dentist may do what’s called a “core buildup.”

As it sounds, a core buildup reinforces that center foundation of the tooth which seats the finished crown. Your dentist will use restorative materials to mold this new core which will be the same size and shape that your tooth would be naturally.

What If A Core Buildup Isn’t Enough?

Your dentist might then take things a step further and use a post to help secure the material to the tooth. This ensures a stable foundation to support your dental crown.

A core and post won’t necessarily guarantee a stronger tooth, however. All the extra material placed in your tooth can weaken it. But the post and core may buy you a little more time with your tooth before it is ultimately extracted.

Do You Need A Post And Core?

If it seems too risky to attempt a core buildup, extraction may be your only option. It all depends on the quality of the tooth structure you have left. Professional dental x-rays are the best way to determine this. Talk with your dentist about your restoration options.

Posted on behalf of:
Columbia Dental Center
915 N Main St #2
Columbia, IL 62236
(618) 281-6161


Should You Get a Crown or a Filling?

Posted in Crowns

You’ve noticed a suspicious dark spot on your tooth and now you’re wondering what you should do about it. If that’s actually a cavity, then it will need some kind of treatment.

Two of the most common methods for repairing tooth decay are fillings and dental crowns. Which will you need?

How Traditional Fillings Work

A filling is a flowable material placed inside a hollowed out space in the tooth. It’s usually light-cured and sets up in a matter of minutes. Fillings are your first line of defense in repairing cavities.

What Makes A Crown Different?

A crown, or cap, is a solid piece of material like porcelain that covers your entire tooth. If a lot of your tooth is damaged from decay, a crown can restore its shape.

Deciding Which Restoration You Need

Which restoration you need depends mainly on how much of your tooth is affected. If the cavity isn’t too deep, a filling is usually enough. But if the decay has reached deeper layers of your tooth or has caused large pieces to chip away, then you’ll need the extra protection of a crown.

What if the damage to your tooth falls somewhere in-between?

Your dentist may recommend a hybrid restoration called an indirect filling (inlay/onlay.) It’s like a filling-crown combo created outside the mouth and then cemented into the tooth like a piece in a puzzle.

It’s impossible to figure out exactly what your tooth needs without having a professional examine it. Call your dentist today to schedule an exam. He or she will help you decide on the restoration that matches your needs.

Posted on behalf of:
Seven Hills Dentistry
1305 Cedarcrest Rd #115
Dallas, GA 30132
(678) 257-7117


What Are Dental Posts and Cores?

Posted in Crowns

Restorative dentistry has a large vocabulary. It’s easy to get confused about the differences between posts, cores, root canals, crowns, and so on.

How do posts and cores relate to crowns?

Get A Grip!

Crowns replace a tooth’s outer layer if it’s been damaged by decay or fracture. Caps take things a step further when a filling is insufficient.

But what happens when even a crown isn’t quite enough?

Dental crowns depend on a tooth having a solid core for support. Without a core, there’s not much for the cap to hold onto.

An artificial core is often made of a similar material as white dental fillings. Your dentist molds it into the tooth to create a new foundation for supporting the crown. This core is typically secured with small pins to help it hold onto the existing tooth.

Posts to Stabilize the Core

Your dentist will call on the help of a dental post if more than half of the natural crown (upper portion) of your tooth is missing, and the core needs more support to stay on the tooth.

At this point, your tooth should already have had a root canal. Posts cannot be placed in teeth without endodontic treatment. The dentist must drill down into the nerve chamber of the tooth to create a hole for placing the post. You don’t want this done on a live nerve!

After the root canal is completed, a dentist places a sturdy metal plug in the excavated area. Then, the core material is packed around it and a crown seals off the whole thing.

Talk with your dentist to learn which restorative techniques are right for saving your tooth.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Smiles Dentistry
2655 Dallas Highway Suite 510
Marietta, GA 30064


Soft Enamel Or Soft Drinks – Which Is to Blame for Tooth Decay?

Posted in Crowns

“Soft enamel” is one of those myths that people still believe in today.

It’s tempting to blame poor oral health on genetics.

But if you think that tooth decay runs in your family because of weak enamel, then you may be surprised to learn the truth.

Is Soft Enamel a Real Thing?

Yes, it is possible to have weak enamel. But it’s a very rare condition, called amelogenesis imperfecta. It’s a developmental defect in which enamel doesn’t properly form. If you had this condition, you would notice that your teeth look brown, mottled, pitted, and splotchy.

If you had this condition, you would likely already know it. But it doesn’t hurt to have your dentist check your teeth to make sure.

The Real Cause of Tooth Decay

While it’s possible for some people to have an enamel defect making their teeth prone to cavities, the biggest factor behind decay is controllable.

You could be actively weakening your enamel by regularly exposing your teeth to acids in your diet.

Soda, sports drinks, energy drinks, wine, tea, and coffee are all acidic beverages that can wear down tooth enamel over time. Regularly sipping on virtually anything other than water puts your teeth at risk of decay since weak enamel lets cavity-causing bacteria attack your teeth.

How to Prevent Cavities

You can help prevent tooth decay and the need for dental restorations such as fillings and crowns by limiting how often you enjoy acidic or sugary drinks and shortening the amount of time it takes you to finish one. This will reduce the length of time your enamel is weakened by acid.

Remineralizing toothpastes and rinses containing fluoride are a great way to strengthen “soft” enamel. Ask your dentist for more ways to lower your risk for tooth decay.

Posted on behalf of:
True Dental
1257 Annapolis Rd.
Odenton, MD 21113
(443) 438-1054


Do You Need a Crown If You Chipped a Front Tooth?

Posted in Crowns

Front teeth can fracture quite easily. Sometimes, it’s blunt trauma to the face from a car accident or a football. In other cases, the enamel was already weak and a piece snapped off when someone went to bite into a burger.

However it happened to you, you’re now concerned with making it look like a whole tooth again before someone gives you an unpleasant nickname.

Your dentist will give you a few treatment options and help you decide on the one that will save your tooth for as long as possible.

Treatment Options For Chipped Teeth

Dental bonding and veneers are just as common as crowns for repairing nicks in the enamel. In fact, your dentist may feel that your case merits the most conservative option possible.

A very minor procedure with bonding (which usually doesn’t even require anesthesia) won’t take away much more tooth structure. Veneers are a little more invasive, but they provide more complete protection.

When To Get A Crown

A lot of structural loss in the tooth usually merits getting a full dental crown. Not only can it completely patch up your tooth, but it will protect it from decay and bite pressure.

How Bad Is It?

Whichever treatment you get will simply be determined by the extent of the fracture. If it was deep and involved the nerve chamber, you may even need a root canal.

But the next time a chipped-tooth emergency arises in your life, don’t panic! Call your local dentist who will see you as soon as possible. You won’t leave the office without something on your tooth!

Posted on behalf of:
Heritage Dental
23945 Franz Rd Suite A
Katy, TX 77493
(832) 709-2429


What Are Temporary Crowns Made Of?

Posted in Crowns

Planning to get your first dental crown? You’re probably a little anxious about what to expect. You’ve heard that you’ll need to wear a temporary for a couple weeks.

Will anyone notice?

What if it comes off?

What does it look like?

These and many other questions are rattling around in your mind!

Why You Need A Temporary

If your dentist were to just put a cap over your tooth as is, it couldn’t fit. Even if it did, your teeth would be sore and you wouldn’t be able to bite properly. Additionally, any decay and damaged parts of your tooth have to come out first to keep your tooth healthy.

This is why your dentist will trim your tooth to receive a customized crown. But doing so leaves your tooth sensitive and susceptible to fractures. Your permanent crown takes a little time to create, so your tooth will just have to wear something else, in the meantime.

Getting A Temporary Crown

Your dentist will have some dental crowns on-hand and ready to go at the time your tooth is prepped. He or she should be able to shape it a bit and maybe even adjust the color to look like your old tooth.

Your final restoration will be a much closer match in terms of look and feel. But the temporary crown will get the job done. Your dentist will use a temporary cement so that it can easily be popped off when you come back for the permanent one.

In the meantime, avoid eating chewy or crunchy foods on your temporary to keep it in place. Your dentist will let you know what else to do to keep your tooth safe!

Posted on behalf of:
Spanaway Family Dentistry
20709 Mountain Hwy E #101
Spanaway, WA 98387
(253) 948-0880


Try a Crown in a Day!

Posted in Crowns

Gone are the days of waiting for weeks to get your new dental crown. Many dental offices are providing these restorations within a single visit. Is a same day crown right for you?

Crown In A Day – How?

CAD/CAM (Computer-Aided Design and Computer-Aided Manufacturing) technology is an up-and-coming field in dentistry.

Dental practices are investing in technology that allows dentists to scan a tooth, virtually design a restoration, and mill it out in an on-site machine. All of this can happen in a single appointment.

In lieu of taking a messy impression of your prepared tooth, your dentist will simply take a picture with a special camera. The resulting virtual image becomes the template for designing your crown.

The milling machine hews a strong crown or bridge right out of a solid piece of ceramic. Your dentist will add the finishing touches, check the fit, and cement in place right then and there. No need for messing with a temporary!

Keep In Mind . . .

A single-visit crown is a great invention because of how much time you save. However, it tends to lack the handmade look of traditional porcelain crowns. That’s because the classic method allows master dental lab technicians to fine-tune the details. They know how to make a false tooth look just like a real one and they prepare it differently from the way the machine does.

You may prefer to have a crown for a front tooth designed the old-fashioned way, such as if it’s a tooth that will always be visible when you smile.

But bridges and crowns for your back teeth are no problem with CAD-CAM!

Talk with your dentist to find out what restorative options are right for your smile.

Posted on behalf of:
Pure Dental Health
2285 Peachtree Rd #203
Atlanta, GA 30309
(678) 666-3642


A Crown in a Day is Possible!

Posted in Crowns

There are a lot of things that hold people back from getting dental work done:

  • Cost
  • Fear of pain
  • Shortage of time

Fortunately, there are advances being made all over the dental healthcare system which are alleviating these common patient concerns.

For example, new technology has made it feasible for folks to get a new dental crown (from start to finish) in a single appointment.

The main reason you would ordinarily have to wait weeks to get your crown is because it’s crafted in an off-site dental lab. This option is still quite viable because of the high quality of restorations produced in labs.

But in the interest of saving time, a lot of dentists have turned to installing an in-office milling machine and computer system that complete the project in one step.

Here’s how it works:

If you need a crown, your dentist will let you know and then schedule the appointment. At this visit, the tooth is prepared (damaged parts are cleaned away) so that a crown can fit over it.

Next, he or she scans your tooth and its neighbors with a special camera. This step eliminates the need for messy impressions. The scan zips off to a computer where your dentist can digitally manipulate it to design the most precise restoration possible.

Finally, these plans go to the on-site machine which hews your new crown out of a solid block of ceramic. You’ll try it on right then and there for a secure fit.

No more fussing with a temporary crown or waiting weeks for lab-made adjustments. You only have to take one afternoon off to get a new crown.

If this process interests you, ask your dentist about the options available in your area.

Posted on behalf of:
Rolling Hills Dentistry
53 North Street
Danbury, CT 06810
(203) 743-0783


Do Dental Crowns Hurt?

Posted in Crowns

When you worry about dental crowns “hurting,” you might have these three areas in mind:

  • Dental crown placement procedure
  • Post-procedure recovery
  • Living with a dental crown

We’ll break these down one-by-one to clear up confusion and put your mind at ease regarding your first dental crown.

Is Getting A Crown Painful?

Not at all. It’s no more uncomfortable than a standard filling. You’ll get a numbing shot so that you don’t feel a thing the entire time.

Post-Placement Sensitivity

It’s possible to experience a little sensitivity for some time after you get a crown. This is because your tooth has to adjust to losing a big part of its outer layer. With time, it will get more tolerant of temperature change. This sensitivity is nothing compared to the pain you could experience if you didn’t get the crown. Sensitivity toothpaste can also help, if you have a small area of recession.

Life With A Dental Crown

Once you’re used to a crown, you probably won’t pay much attention to it, at all.

As long as the crown material you have is compatible with the teeth that will be biting down on it, you shouldn’t have any problems. On occasion, some crowns will be too hard for the natural teeth. That can cause some premature wear and sensitivity.

Your dentist will help you avoid this by recommending a material that’s right for your smile.

Just care for your crown the same way you do for your other teeth. Regular brushing and flossing and not biting down on ridiculously hard objects will keep it strong and comfortable for years to come.

Talk with your dentist about any other concerns you have about dental crowns.

Posted on behalf of:
Northampton Dental
24036 Kuykendahl Rd Suite 300
Tomball, TX 77375
(832) 639-6350

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