What Is a Dental Crown?
By DR. KRIS O'NEILL
May 22, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: dental crowns  

Dental Crowns If you have a severely decayed, misshapen, or injured tooth, don't despair. Today's dental crowns restore a variety of dental problems, allowing people to keep their teeth for years and to avoid extraction. Your dentist, Dr. Kris O'Neill, offers CEREC same-day crowns at her Columbia, SC, dental practice. Convenient, quick, strong, and realistic, CEREC crowns revitalize and protect damaged teeth, and the aesthetic results are just beautiful.

Just what is a crown?

It's a tooth-shaped protective covering, usually crafted from lifelike porcelain. Made according to oral impressions, a crown looks, feels, and bites just like your real tooth because most of your natural tooth structure remains in place. Your dentist in Columbia only removes the decayed and damaged portions and then permanently bonds this realistic restoration in place.

Dentists choose porcelain for most crown applications because of its durability and realistic appearance. While some doctors use a dental lab for crown fabrication, Dr. O'Neil is trained in the innovative CEREC process which allows her to design, create, and place a dental crown in just one visit--all in the comfort of her office.

A crown in one to two hours?

Yes, you read that correctly. With CEREC dental crowns, your tooth will be restored, strong, and functional in just one to two hours. Here's how.

CEREC stands for Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics. In other words, Dr. O'Neil designs your porcelain crown right in the treatment room as you relax and watch. Using special digital impressions (no messy putty or trays), your dentist tells a milling machine exactly the size, shape, and color your new crown should be. She does this with CAD/CAM software. CAD/CAM means computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing, a process which eliminates the time and expense involved in an outside dental lab.

The milling procedure takes about 15 minutes after which the doctor does a final shaping and polishing on that new crown. Then, she bonds the restoration to your prepared tooth. Usually, CEREC crowns are so precisely crafted that there's little to no need to adjust the crown for bite and fit. That's it. You have a fully restored tooth.

A final note, dentists place crowns to anchor fixed bridgework, to finish root canal therapy and to restore dental implants, making crowns very popular and useful restorations, says the American Dental Association.

Life with your CEREC crown

Expect it to last 10 years or more, but as with any restoration, you must brush twice a day and floss daily to reduce plaque and tartar. Also, Dr. O'Neill will expect to see you every six months for a complete oral examination and hygienic cleaning. These oral hygiene habits keep crowns clean and bright and spot any problems before they become serious.

Contact us

If you have a damaged tooth, a dental crown could be in your future. Why not get the best kind possible? Contact Dr. O'Neill's office staff in Columbia, SC, to arrange a consultation on CEREC dental crowns. Call (803) 988-1070.

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