Several years ago I decided to take a trip to the dentist after skipping multiple appointments for over 15 years. I truly had a dental anxiety and had a hard time getting over my fears. Thankfully, my dental visit went smoothly with only four cavities identified. What I did find from this dental visit was that there was a great deal of new information and technology that I had been missing out on. Laser-based technology and digital imaging are just a few examples. With this blog, I want you to understand that you can get over your fears and learn about this new technology like I did, so enjoy the information.
The teeth are made to withstand a great deal of pressure, and in fact, dental enamel is the strongest material in the entire body. This strength is due to the large amount of calcium-phosphate molecules that line the surfaces of the teeth. Unfortunately, demineralization does occur, and total bite pressure in the mouth exceeds 5,000 pounds per square inch. The teeth are made to withstand 30,000 pounds of pressure, but minute cracks can form that reduce strength immensely. The small cracks and demineralization mean that the teeth can sometimes chip or break apart along the cusp. Pain, sharp edges, and cosmetic concerns may bring you to the dentist after a tooth injury. Your dentist can repair the tooth with a bonding procedure or a dental crown. Keep reading to learn about these general dentistry procedures so you can decide which is best for your situation.
Dental bonding is a process where small gaps and imperfections in the teeth are repaired with the placement of resin. Cracks and chips can be fixed with resin as long as the tooth damage is relatively small. Resin is not nearly as strong as the ceramic, porcelain, or steel materials that are used when a crown is made. However, resin is relatively cheap. In fact, your dentist will use the same type of composite material during the bonding procedure that is used when a filling is placed. This means that you can expect to pay around the same amount as you would if you were receiving a filling and bonding can be completed in a single day.
Dental bonding also does not require any lidocaine or other anesthetics unless the dental professional needs to smooth out the chip. This may be necessary if a sliver of natural tooth material lines the damage. A larger and smoother area can help the resin adhere to the tooth dentin better. Once the tooth is ready, your dentist will use a dental shade guide to find the exact hue or tone of the tooth that is being treated. The correct resin color is chosen, it is formed to fill in the tooth damage, and a UV light hardens the composite. Usually a drill or burr tool will be used afterwards to smooth and shape the composite. Your input will be used to make sure the bonded edges are the right shape.
Once the bonding is complete, you can expect the repair to last for three to seven years.
The placement of a dental crown is one of your other options to have your cracked or chipped tooth repaired. Usually, a crown is the right choice if a large area of the tooth is damaged. If a smaller area of damage occurs, but the tooth becomes infected and needs a root canal, then a crown will likely need to be placed on the tooth afterwards as well. This is best because the leftover enamel and dentin will be brittle. In general, dental crowns are a great choice when a tooth needs added strength, structure, or protection. A single dental crown will likely cost you between about $500 and $2500 dollars, but it can last for up to 15 years.
Dental crowns do require some extensive preparation. A local anesthetic will be provided and either some or all of the dental enamel will be removed from the exterior of the tooth. An impression is made of the newly shaped tooth and your dentist will arrange for crown creation through a laboratory. Depending on your needs, porcelain, steel, or a combination of the two materials will be used to form the tooth cap.
Your dentist will need to adhere a temporary acrylic crown on the tooth until your next appointment where the permanent cap is placed. The same sort of shaping that occurs during bonding may need to be completed to perfect the shape of the crown. All in all, you can expect the entire crown process to take a few weeks.Share
2 June 2015