Just like tires wear out, so do fillings. On a tire, you may patch it, or have to replace it completely. When a filling wears out, you typically remove it, prepare the tooth, and place a slightly larger filling. At some point, the tooth will wear so much that it’s important to strengthen the tooth with a dental crown before the remaining amount of tooth enamel becomes too weak and fractures apart.
You may or may not experience signs of a weakened tooth, but if you do, it typically involves sensitivity to pressure, sweets, or different temperatures of food. Being proactive about strengthening the tooth early enough can prevent more costly procedures like a root canal. Whether or not the tooth bothers you, it’s important to have your dentist check it regularly so as to catch any signs of leakage, recurrent decay, or failing of the filling.
When it’s time for you to have a crown, the treatment is typically broken up into 2 separate appointments. At the first visit, your dentist will remove any old restorations or tooth decay, and prepare the tooth for supporting a full coverage crown. The reshaped tooth will have an impression taken that is sent to the dental laboratory where your permanent crown will be made. A temporary crown may be placed over the tooth for comfort and aesthetic reasons.
After about 2 weeks, your permanent crown will be ready. The crown’s coloration and design is so that it will blend in with your other teeth. Your dentist will place the crown over the tooth to ensure proper fit, and will then permanently be cemented into place, fully covering your tooth and restoring it back to its normal function.
Posted on behalf of Dr. Michael Mansouri, Lawrenceville Family Dental Care, P.C.
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