How Is a Tooth Prepared for a Dental Crown?

When dentists talk about a dental crown as a tooth restoration option, they are talking about the prosthetic crown. It is usually used to fortify a tooth that has suffered extensive damage or decay and cannot be repaired successfully with other more conservative options such as fillings, inlays or onlays.

A dental crown is usually created in a laboratory, and the process is meticulous. The tooth to be crowned needs to be prepared to ensure the new dental crown fits over it perfectly.

Preparing for a dental crown

Before commencing the procedure, the dentist will examine the patient’s medical history. Patients who have had replacement joints may be administered antibiotics for the procedure. If there is a case of dental anxiety, the dentist may suggest sedation for the treatment. Sedation dentistry is available in different forms, including oral, inhaled or intravenous. The following is the typical process for preparing teeth for a dental crown.

Initial impression

Sometimes, the dentist will make a preliminary impression or mold of the tooth before altering the tooth’s structure. The material used for the impression may be polyvinyl siloxane, silicone or elastic material. The impression will be used to create a temporary crown while the permanent prosthetic is being created in the lab.

Color matching

If a tooth-colored crown is used, a color guide will be used to determine the shade of the natural teeth. The color is matched in natural lighting for accuracy. Dental porcelain and composite resin are available to give an exact match of the physical appearance of the tooth enamel, making it possible to create a crown that is almost indistinguishable.

Isolation

The tooth is separated from the tongue and cheeks to avert injuries from the tools used for tooth preparation. A barrier called a rubber dam is often used, but the dentist may opt for other retraction devices such as cheek shields or cotton rolls.

Basic preparation

This process basically entails cutting the tooth with unique dental burs to create space for the restoration and to remove decay or parts of the tooth that are structurally weak or unsupported. The tooth is prepped by removing decay, previous restoration materials (if present), and if possible, by filling any deep cavity or missing portions of the tooth. The dentist may need to insert tiny metal (usually titanium) pins into the tooth to reconstruct the part of the tooth that will be crowned. Different filling materials such as composite resin, glass ionomer or a silver amalgam may be used to reconstruct the tooth.

The dentist will carefully move the dental drill around the tooth until they achieve the size and shape desired. Generally, the preparation is done under continuous water-cooling to shield oral tissues from excessive heat.

Final note

The basic buildup is an essential aspect of the dental crown placement procedure. There is a significant difference between reconstructions that involve all or a substantial part of the tooth core, and those that only need a small amount of filling in the core to repair a minor chip. The dentist will inform the patient if a complete reconstruction is necessary.

Request an appointment here: https://www.professionaldentalcare.net or call Professional Dental Care at (559) 467-1234 for an appointment in our Fresno office.

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