Traumatic injury or basic wear and tear can damage teeth, which do not heal naturally. When a tooth becomes weak, chipped, cracked, or severely discolored, your dentist may suggest a dental crown. Dr. Ryan Hussong offers complete retorative dentistry, including various dental crowns, onlays, and inlays, from his Polk City dental office.
A tooth can be divided into two basic parts: the root and the crown. The enamel-coated part of the tooth that is visible above the gum line is called the crown. Restorative dental crowns can be fabricated from all metal, porcelain fused to metal (PFM), zirconia, or all porcelain. To restore a damaged natural crown, a porcelain crown offers natural esthetics, as well as durability, so it is Dr. Hussong’s material of choice in most cases.
The procedure involves numbing the tooth with anesthesia. Depending on the severity of the damage, a tooth may need to have a buildup, which is a filling that restores enough of the tooth for the crown to grasp. Otherwise, the tooth is prepped to make room for the crown. An impression is made of the prepared tooth. Dr. Hussong will determine a shade for the patient’s new crown so that the lab technicianwill craft the restoration to blend with neighboring teeth. A temporary crown, made from resin or acrylic, is cemented in place and worn until the final pocelain crown is delivered to Dr. Hussong’s office.
A few weeks later, the patient will return, the temporary crown will be removed, and the permanent crown will be placed onto the tooth, where it will then be inspected for fit and necessary adjustments. The crown is finally secured with a permanent cement, bonding, or glue.
Partial crowns, or ¾ crowns, are an option when a filling does not provide substantial support, but a full crown is not necessary. There are two types of partial crowns: An inlay fills the space between the cusps on top of a tooth. An onlay works the same way, but covers one or more cusps. Inlays and onlays are custom-made, just like porcelain crowns, by a ceramist in a dental lab. Also like the crown procedure, inlays and onlys require the patient to wear a temporary restoration until the final is ready for placement. Inlays and onlays can be fabricated from the same material used in making dental crowns.
About the Author: After receiving his bachelor’s degree in biology from St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN, Dr. Hussong went on to earn his dental degree from the University of Iowa, College of Dentistry. He is happily accepting new patients. Please call Cornerstone Dental: Hussong Ryan DDS at (515) 984-6001 to schedule an appointment.