To Crown or Not to Crown
As far as a dental restoration goes, crowns and caps are used synonymously.
Crowns are typically used to restore a tooth's function and appearance following a restorative procedure such as a root canal. When decay in a tooth has become so advanced that large portions of the tooth must be removed, crowns are often used to restore the tooth.
Crowns are also used to attach bridges, cover implants and prevent a cracked tooth from becoming worse. Crowns also serve an aesthetic use, and are applied when a discolored or stained tooth needs to be restored to its natural appearance.
A tooth is usually reduced in size to accommodate a crown. An impression is taken and a cast is made of the existing teeth. The impression is sent to a special lab, which manufactures a custom-designed crown. A temporary plastic crown is applied until the final crown is ready to cement in place. There is a trend towards the crowns being made the same day in the office while you wait. Dr. Patel currently does not provide this service as he believes this restricts his ability to recommend the appropriate material for each individual situation. Same day crowns are typically made of only one type of material and this may not be ideal in all situations.
Onlays vs Crowns
Partial coverage restorations typically called Veneers, Onlays or ¾ crowns are a conservative way to get the benefits of crowns whilst leaving more natural tooth structure in place. All restorations have a life span and what we need to keep in mind is what will need to be done next time. If there is more tooth available then we have more choices. Having more natural tooth may allow us to use advancements in dental technology whereas once a crown is placed the tooth will always need a crown.« Go Back