When a tooth is decayed, broken, cracked or otherwise damaged, it cannot be ignored. The bad stuff needs to be removed and replaced with a material that gives it back its shape and strength. Otherwise, you lose the tooth forever! There are times when a dental filling is sufficient to repair decay. But when more is needed, your dentist at the Placerville Dental Group uses another approach with an inlay, an overlay or a crown. Let’s “sink our teeth” into each of these procedures, why they are necessary and what to expect if you need one.
The amount of damage experienced by your tooth, either due to trauma, accident, or decay, determines the restoration required:
All of the restorations require preparation of the tooth and two visits to complete, which we’ll explain next.
Teeth are amazing tools that need to be strong and generally come with the optimal shape to do their job. Repairing a tooth that is heavily decayed, damaged or broken is a two-step process. Your first visit to the Placerville Dental Group determines the best treatment for your situation. Your tooth is prepared to receive its restoration, impressions are made for a perfect fit and a temporary crown, inlay or overlay will leave you comfortable as your new restoration is created in a dental lab.
Your second visit places your customized restoration into its permanent home — your healthy smile! And since choices make us smile even wider, you even get to decide which materials you want to use for restoring your smile.
Porcelain or ceramic crowns, inlays and overlays are now the most commonly used indirect restorations. You’ll be assisted by the dentists at Placerville Dental Group to choose a color that will blend perfectly with your other teeth. Dental porcelain is very durable and long-lasting, but modern materials such as lithium disilicate do not cause extra wear to adjoining teeth, even over extended periods of time.
Composite restorations are made from the same materials used for fillings. They have the benefit of a wide choice of colors to match your teeth, although they can discolor and stain like your real teeth. They are also more likely to wear with long-term use. The dental professionals at Placerville Dental Group can discuss ways to keep your composite restorations healthy for years to come.
Gold has been used for many years as a tried and true material in crowns. This material is resistant to tarnishing and wear and doesn’t damage your surrounding teeth. If you feel that a gold crown is the only option for you, feel free to discuss this with our Placerville dentists. It does come with a higher cost, but after all, Placerville is in the heart of the Gold Country!
Your crown is still your tooth, just with a little more technology than it was born with. Treat it and all your teeth well with regular check-ups and proper dental hygiene. With the assistance of the Placerville Dental Group you’ll be happy you kept your smile healthy using a crown, inlay or overlay.