What's Involved Getting Porcelain Crowns
Crowns are a common restoration provided by a cosmetic dentist or a general practice dentist. Your dentist may recommend that you get a porcelain crown if one of your front teeth is cracked, badly chipped or has stains that cannot be whitened. A porcelain crown also functions as a restoration after you have had a large filling or root canal therapy. Porcelain crowns are similar to veneers because they are both customized to the shape, color and size of your natural teeth. However, veneers are strictly cosmetic. The process of getting a porcelain crown is simple and pain-free.
Preparation of the Tooth
A crown requires a close fit around the remaining core of your natural tooth. In order to get a porcelain crown, your tooth must be carefully prepared by the dentist. This process starts with medication to numb your gums. Once your mouth is numb, the dentist precisely removes a layer of enamel and any leftover filling material. If any decay is discovered, the dentist removes it. A composite core may need to be placed inside of the tooth's chamber in order to strengthen it.
Tooth Impressions and Porcelain Shade
After the dentist shapes your tooth, they make impressions of your maxillary and mandibular arches. A gingeval cord may be used to push your gum tissue down and away from the tooth. The dental assistant fills a tray with polyvinyl siloxane impression material. They push the tray onto the tooth. It takes about three to five minutes for the impression to set. A dental laboratory creates your customized porcelain crown based on the impressions and the shade of your natural enamel provided by your cosmetic dentist.
Placement of a Temporary Crown
Once the dentist removes the tray of polyvinyl siloxane impression material from your mouth, you receive a temporary crown. This crown protects your tooth until the dental laboratory completes your permanent crown. Dentists make the temporary crown out of acrylic resin while you wait. A temporary dental cement seals it to your tooth.
Placement of the Permanent Porcelain Crown
Dental laboratories require one to two weeks to create your permanent porcelain crown. You return to the dentist, and they remove the temporary crown. The dentist uses dams to retract your teeth and keep the area dry. Any rough or uneven crown edges are filed for smoothness. They use a permanent cement to affix the crown to your tooth.