Here’s How to Cope with A Temporary Crown
There are a variety of reasons why a dentist may recommend a dental crown, which may involve wearing a temporary crown during the process. These reasons include the restoration of the appearance and function of a damaged tooth. While dental fillings are used for minor tooth damage, dental crowns are used to protect teeth that are more seriously damaged by tooth decay, fractures, or other conditions. Dental crowns are just that, a cover, or crown, over the tooth to protect it from further damage.
Conventional crown placement generally takes a few weeks to complete and requires two dentist visits. The first visit is to prepare the decayed and damaged tooth to be fit for a crown. The dentist will also take a mold of the tooth. The crown is a custom-fitted replica of the old tooth that fits snugly over your natural tooth. After the initial visit, you must wait generally one to two weeks for your permanent crown placement to be fabricated at an outside dental lab. During the wait, you will wear a temporary crown to cover and protect your prepared tooth.
What Is A Temporary Crown?
A temporary crown is just that, quick, fitted replicas of your permanent crown. As only a temporary solution to protect your tooth, it is not permanently attached to your tooth. It is made with acrylic resin and designed to match the natural color of your teeth. These are also commonly referred to as transition crowns because they act as the bridge to permanent crown installation.
A dental lab fabricates temporary crowns using a tooth impression that is taken before the tooth is shaped and prepared. The dentist prepares your natural tooth before the permanent crown is formed and placed on it. This involves carefully shaping it by reducing its size to make room for the crown’s installation. After the tooth is prepared, a second tooth impression is taken and sent to the lab where it’s used to create your permanent crown. Meanwhile, before you leave your appointment, the dentist will secure a temporary crown on your prepared tooth. He will check to see that your bite is good. The temporary is attached using an impermanent adhesive.
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Although temporary crowns are not permanent, they offer a broad range of benefits and you need to take good care of them as though they were your natural teeth or a permanent crown.
Why You Must Have a Temporary Crown
A temporary crown is necessary to protect the dentist’s work on your tooth while your new permanent crown is being made. One of the main benefits of temporary crowns is preventing discomfort and hypersensitivity on a prepared tooth. When a dentist shapes your tooth to create space for the permanent crown, part of your natural tooth structure is removed. Sensitive areas such as the dentin may be left exposed. Temporary crowns cover these areas and prevent contact with hot or cold foods and beverages.
Temporary crowns also play a crucial role in ensuring the prepared tooth and its adjacent teeth do not shift before the permanent crown’s placement. They also prevent the growth of gums over the edges of a damaged tooth. Without temporary crowns, these cases could lead to dental health complications and make the placing of a crown difficult.
What Do I Need To Do When Wearing a Temporary Crown?
The acrylic material that is used to make temporary crowns is not as sturdy as metal, porcelain or ceramic materials used to create permanent crowns. And, with only temporary bonding, the temporary crown can be unintentionally loosened and fall out. While wearing your temporary crown, here are some simple ways to protect it and avoid complications and extra visits to your dentist:
- Limit or reduce the amount of chewing on the side of mouth with the temporary crown
- Avoid hard foods and snacks such as candies, nuts, crunchy vegetables and carrots
- Don’t eat sticky food products such as jelly beans, licorice, popcorn, caramels, or gummy bears
- If you experience some discomfort when eating hot, cold or sugary foods, avoid them
- Avoid aggressive brushing especially in the area where the temporary crown is located
- Don’t use an electric toothbrush while wearing a temporary crown
- Take care when flossing through the space next to the temporary crown
When you have to wear one, a temporary crown can feel and seem inconvenient. Fortunately, you only need to wear it for a short time. Sometimes, such as if you have heat or cold sensitivity, those couple of weeks can seem longer. But, there is an easy way to avoid a temporary crown altogether.
Don’t Want To Deal With Temporary Crowns?
While it serves an important purpose in the traditional placement of dental crowns, a temporary crown can be a hassle for today’s busy people. Two appointments and two weeks of paying attention to everything you put in your mouth can disrupt your routine. Fortunately, there is an easier alternative available.
Modern dental restoration has a new process that provides for single visit, same-day permanent crown placement. The method is called CEREC (Chairside Economical Restorations Esthetic Ceramic). CEREC uses a CAD/CAM, or computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing system to create your permanent crown at the dentist office. With this procedure, the dentist prepares your tooth and takes a digital scan of the tooth (no more gooey molds!). He uses the onsite CEREC milling unit to create your permanent crown while you wait, and in just a few minutes. You don’t need two visits to the dentist and temporary crowns are out of the picture. Even better, the ceramic crowns created from this procedure are more refined and natural-looking.
Balle & Associates Offer Same Day Dental Crowns
If s same-day crown sounds like a good option for you, contact the experts at Balle & Associates, DDS in Las Vegas today for more on CEREC and any of our dental procedures. Balle & Associates focuses on providing comfortable, convenient and quality dental services for all your family dental needs.
Balle & Associates is staffed by the most skilled and experienced general dentists in Las Vegas, Nevada. Dr. Peter Balle and Dr. Tate Guild use a personalized approach to get to know patients and offer them services specific to their needs.