When a tooth is damaged beyond repair, a CEREC® crown is one treatment option available to restore its function and appearance. Like a traditional crown, a CEREC® crown is a cap that fits over the tooth. However, it offers its own unique advantages compared to a traditional crown while protecting the tooth in the same way.
How does a crown protect a damaged tooth?
A tooth can become damaged due to decay, trauma to the face, or biting down on something too hard. Sometimes when a tooth has had a large filling, the remaining natural structure can become brittle. Cracked or broken teeth do not always cause pain, and sometimes a patient may not even notice that anything is wrong, at least not right away.
Once a patient becomes aware that a tooth is cracked or broken, immediate evaluation by a dentist should follow. The dentist may recommend a crown as a treatment, which can protect the damaged tooth in several ways.
Holding the tooth together
When a tooth cracks, it can fragment into multiple pieces. These fragments can break apart over time and when subjected to pressure from chewing. A crown helps to prevent this by covering the tooth and holding all the pieces together.
Reinforcing the tooth
Chewing food exerts a great deal of pressure on the teeth, especially the back teeth. A crown shores up the damaged tooth against these forces and restores its structural integrity to be as functional as before.
Forming a barrier against other irritants
Most dental issues develop because the teeth are exposed to acids, bacteria, and food particles in the mouth. A crown prevents these irritants from reaching the tooth and causing further damage.
What specific advantages does a CEREC® crown offer?
A traditional crown is produced in a laboratory, and crafting it takes time. A patient typically has to wait at least two weeks before receiving a permanent crown. An additional trip to the dentist is then required to put it in place.
A CEREC® crown eliminates the wait and the need for multiple visits. The dentist creates the crown in the office the same day after using computer-aided design to capture digital images of the tooth and jaw. As soon as it is ready, the dentist can install it over the tooth. The entire process takes hours rather than weeks and can be accomplished in a single appointment.
While expediency is the major advantage of a CEREC® crown, there are other advantages. It is made of a sturdy ceramic material that resists abrasion and should provide a reliable and long-lasting restoration. It may also have a more natural appearance in the mouth because it does not have a dark-colored metal core.
Many different forces can damage teeth, causing cracks, fractures, or irreparable decay. A crown covers the entire tooth to hold it together, restore its function, and protect it from further damage. A CEREC® crown works the same way as a traditional crown but can be created and installed in the mouth much more expediently.
Request an appointment or call Siegert Dental at 608-394-3943 for an appointment in our Onalaska office.
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