Posts for category: DENTAL TREATMENTS
When your dentist says that you need a crown during your dental exam, royalty is not usually the first thing that comes to your mind! A dental crown, otherwise known as a cap, covers the tooth and can vary in function, depending upon the position of the tooth. Crowns usually cover all of the visible part of the tooth and can vary in size and appearance.
A crown can be used to protect a weak tooth from breaking, hold together an already broken or worn tooth, cover the tooth that has a large filling or dental implant, hold a dental bridge in place, or even support a cosmetic modification.
Several types of crowns are available, depending upon the requirements of the tooth to be treated. Stainless steel crowns can be used on permanent teeth, but are usually considered to be a temporary solution as compared to a custom fit crown. These types of crowns are also used on children's baby teeth because they are more cost-effective, since they will be lost over time.
Metal crowns are another option that includes gold alloys, or base-metal alloys. Metal crowns are notable due to their ability to withstand biting forces and rarely can be broken. Unfortunately, all metal crowns are the least cosmetically preferred manner to treat a tooth.
Porcelain fused to metal crowns more closely resemble a normal tooth. These types of crowns have been used on front and back teeth that demand a cosmetic consideration. However, the fired porcelain to the underlying metal sub-struction can chip over time and function. The most recent release of all porcelain crowns called Bruxzirs, considered chip-resistant and metal free, are showing great promise in addressing the cosmetic demands that present day patients require.
As the field of dentistry advances and the use of technology in the field increases, the concept of minimally invasive dentistry has emerged. Preservation of a healthy set of natural teeth for each patient should be the objective of every dentist. Minimally invasive dentistry is characterized by the following:
- Regard natural tooth structure as valuable
- Preserve, rather than replace, original natural tissue
- Focus on prevention
- Minimize invasive procedures during treatment
- Prevention begins with good oral hygiene
- Dental caries are considered an infectious disease
- Early detection of caries and other diseases can prevent the spread of infection
- Focus on remineralization of enamel as a preventive effort in treating decay
The goal of our entire team at Thomas Family Dentistry is to provide minimally invasive dental treatment that will preserve as much original tissue as possible. This method of providing dentistry is the most conservative approach that leaves the tooth stronger in structure than procedures that modify the tooth through more invasive measures.
When a restoration, like a filling, must be made to a tooth, a greater amount of healthy tooth tissue than actual decayed tissue is often removed. An estimated 50 to 71 percent of the work that a dentist completes involves the repair or replacement of previous restorations. The use of durable restorative materials can also decrease the need for later repair or restoration work.
The days of being required to "cut a bigger hole to fix the hole" has been greatly reduced by implementing new techniques and technologies. Tooth tissue can be preserved at a greater percentage through the use of innovative adhesive materials. Glass ionomer cements release minerals into the surrounding tooth tissue and help prevent future cavities. Resin-based composite and dentin bonding agents are designed to bond to the enamel and preserve it.
New technology and the invention of small, hand-held tools also allow for a less-invasive form of restorations. Using these new instruments allow the treatment of decay in its more superficial form, which not only preserves tooth structure, but can usually be done without the need for anesthetic.