Dental crowns can restore teeth that are in bad shape, whether as a result of decay or injury. Additionally, more and more people are turning to crowns for cosmetic purposes, such as misshapen teeth, chips, cracks, and alignment problems. Cosmetic dentistry focuses on the form and the function of the teeth, which is where dental…
How Long Does a Crown Smile Makeover Take?
Crowns are used during smile makeover treatments for a variety of reasons including to fix damaged teeth, as abutments for dental bridges or to improve a tooth's appearance. Also known as caps, these oral prosthetics cover the entire visible part of a tooth, hiding its real appearance while restoring its function.
Getting crowns during a smile makeover
One of the reasons why crowns are so popular with dentists is the fact that the patient's teeth can be restored in as little as two weeks. Some dentists even make crowns on-site, shortening the length of time it takes to get a crown from a couple of weeks to a single trip to the dentist. Crowns are typically used to:
- Cover up severely-decayed teeth with a large filling
- As anchors for dental bridges
- To protect damaged teeth from further damage
- To hide stains and discoloration when whitening treatments have failed or will not be effective
- As artificial teeth attached to dental implants
- To protect a tooth after a root canal
Smile makeover treatments aim to restore the appearance of the patient's teeth, but the use of crowns provides cosmetic and therapeutic benefits.
The different types of dental crowns
Dental crowns can be made from a variety of materials and each has its unique properties. This often dictates what type of crown the dentist decides to use during a smile makeover. The common types of crowns used in dentistry include:
- Stainless steel: These often come prefabricated and they are mostly used as temporary crowns. They are also used to protect the baby teeth of young patients when they are at risk of falling out prematurely
- Metal alloys: Crowns can be made from metal alloys that contain gold, silver, platinum or other metals. These are typically the least aesthetically-pleasing crowns, but they are also the most durable. They are more likely to be used for teeth in the back of the mouth during smile makeovers since they are not visible when a person smiles
- Porcelain fused to metal: These give patients a combination of the best of metal and porcelain crowns. They look just like real teeth, but they are more durable than all-porcelain crowns
- Porcelain: These types of crowns are most likely to be used during a smile makeover since they have the most natural-looking appearance
What to expect when getting a crown
The installation of a dental crown requires the removal of enamel so the crown fits snugly on the crown. This permanently changes the tooth and it will need to always be protected with a restoration moving forward. The dentist will inject the patient with a local anesthetic prior to removing enamel.
The patient's teeth are prepared and an impression is taken. The impression is sent to a lab that makes crowns. The finished product gets back to the dentist in about two weeks. The patient is fitted with temporary crowns that are removed once their customized crowns are ready.
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