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All the below content has been written by Dr. Sandip Sachar.
Cosmetic porcelain crowns
What is the difference between a cap and a crown?
Putting a “cap” on a tooth, and putting a “crown” on a tooth are the same thing.
What is a cosmetic porcelain crown?
A cosmetic porcelain crown or, cap is a way to improve one’s appearance and create a cosmetic result by covering a tooth. When a fracture or tooth decay are present, it is also way to restore a tooth in a cosmetic way. A porcelain crown is made out of tooth colored porcelain that covers a tooth or replaces the diseased part of a tooth. It is a way to restore a tooth to its normal shape, size, function and appearance. It is utilized as a cosmetic stand-alone procedure or also when a tooth has more decay or trauma than traditional tooth colored filling is able to repair. A crown is fabricated in the dental laboratory and need to be the exact color, shape and size to make the tooth function normal and look aesthetic. It covers the whole tooth whereas a tooth colored filling or porcelain filling only cover part of a tooth.
What are the different types of crowns?
A cosmetic crown, or porcelain crown, is constructed only of tooth-colored porcelain. In the past, dental crowns were made out of porcelain over metals. Recently, cosmetic crowns made out of only porcelain have replaced these metal and porcelain crowns for better cosmetic results. Over time, our gums can recede slightly, and this can reveal the base of the crown that is made out of metal. Sometimes, you can see a gray line above a crown, near the gums. This is the metal showing through where previously it was hidden by the gums. The cosmetic porcelain crown is made out of porcelain only, and no metal. Therefore, if and when the gums recede, your porcelain crown still look natural and you are not able to see any exposed metal or gray line.
Natural tooth enamel is translucent, meaning that light is able to pass through partially. Cosmetic porcelain crowns are also more translucent than porcelain over metal crowns. A cosmetic porcelain crown allows more light to pass through it, whereas the metal in a porcelain over metal crown blocks the light, making the porcelain appear more opaque. Using a cosmetic porcelain crown, we can mimic the translucency of your natural tooth enamel better than if we had metal below it.
We still use crowns made of porcelain over metal where we need more strength. For example, for the teeth in the back of the mouth that bear more load when chewing. In these cases, at Sachar Dental NYC, we only use precious metals under the porcelain, and we cover the margin with porcelain such that one cannot see the gray metal at the base. This way, the teeth in the back of the mouth are able to maintain their strength, and also their aesthetics. In the front of the mouth, these teeth bear less load when chewing than the teeth in the back of the mouth. Therefore, cosmetic porcelain crowns are a viable option for the front teeth. This enables a more cosmetic results with more translucency.
Why would I get a cosmetic porcelain crown?
Cosmetic porcelain crowns are indicated for two reasons. Sometimes, they are used for cosmetic reasons alone, and other times they are utilized to repair diseased or problem teeth.
Cosmetic porcelain crowns are used for the following reasons:
- Stained teeth
- Discolored teeth
- Root canal teeth that have become discolored
- Out of alignment teeth
- Crooked teeth
- Short teeth
- Tooth decay
- Fractured tooth
- Chipped teeth
- Broken tooth
- Large cavities
- After root canal
- An old crown has failed
In general, cosmetic porcelain crowns are used in the front of the mouth to cover a tooth for cosmetic reasons or to repair a tooth that has trauma or decay. Also, the cosmetic porcelain crown is utilized when a tooth-colored filling or porcelain filling is unable to fill the deficit alone. The cosmetic porcelain crown covers an entire tooth. This restores the original shape and function.
How is a cosmetic porcelain crown done?
The first step in getting a cosmetic porcelain crown is to prepare the tooth that will receive it. The tooth is filed to remove any damaged part of the tooth when tooth decay is present. When utilized for cosmetic reasons alone, a small amount of the tooth is also filed. After removing a small part of the tooth, we take a custom mold of the teeth and send it to our dental laboratory. We send detailed instructions on how to fabricate the cosmetic porcelain crown. We match the color of the porcelain to your existing teeth. We will then place a temporary crown in order to protect the tooth while you wait for the cosmetic crown to be fabricated in our laboratory.
You then return in approximately 1-2 weeks. We will check the fit of the porcelain crown to make sure it fits exactly over the prepared tooth, and the bite is in perfect alignment. The porcelain crown is then permanently bonded onto your tooth. The result will be a tooth that looks normal, functions normal, and matches the original shape, size, color and translucency.
What materials are cosmetic porcelain crowns made of?
Unlike traditional crowns, porcelain crowns are made only out of porcelain. There is no metal beneath the porcelain. In the past, we used to use porcelain over metal crowns in the front of the mouth. However, if the gums were to recede, the metal would become visible at the base of the crown near the gums. Today, we’re able to avoid this with the use of translucent cosmetic porcelain only crowns.
We still use crowns made of porcelain over metal in the back of the mouth where more strength is necessary for chewing. In the front of the mouth, the porcelain alone usually has enough strength to handle the load of chewing.
How is a cosmetic porcelain crown inserted into my mouth?
When your cosmetic crown comes back from our dental laboratory, we first evaluate it to make sure that it is a perfect fit, and color. Assuming we are happy with the fabrication, we will then clean the underlying tooth thoroughly to remove any bacteria and plaque. We will then permanently bond the crown on top of the remaining tooth. This visit takes approximately 30-45 minutes and when we are done, the crown is permanently bonded in place.
What should I expect after a cosmetic porcelain crown procedure?
On your first visit, we will use local anesthesia to ensure that you are comfortable while we prepare your tooth to receive the crown. On this visit, we will insert a temporary crown that you leave with. You will be instructed to not eat anything until the anesthesia wears off. We advise patients to avoid chewing hard items as much as possible on the affected side while they have a temporary crown.
A week later, patients return for a second visit to receive the permanent porcelain crown. Depending on what materials we use to bond the crown to your tooth, you may be instructed not to eat on the affected side for 1-24 hours. If anesthesia was utilized, you will be instructed to not eat until after the anesthesia wears off. Usually, you should not experience any pain or discomfort after the permanent crown is placed. The next evaluation will be during your regular professional dental cleaning and checkup.
How long will a cosmetic porcelain crown last?
A porcelain crown should last up to 15 years or more under normal circumstances. In patients that have a tendency to clench or grind, the crown may be damaged and its expected life may be shortened. For these patients, we recommend a nightguard to protect your porcelain crown from clenching and grinding. If there is damage to your porcelain crown, it may be replaced.
What should I do if my cosmetic porcelain crown does not feel right?
If you experience any problems or discomfort with your porcelain crown, we advise you to call and come in for consultation. We will evaluate and examine the porcelain crown in order to make sure that is not loose, or have any other problems. We will take x-rays in order to look for any problems under the crown or with the nerve. We will also evaluate your bite to ensure that it is even.
What should I do if my old cosmetic porcelain crown falls out?
We advise patients to come in as soon as possible if they experience a porcelain crown that falls out. We will advise you to leave it out of your mouth to avoid any risk of swallowing or choking on it. The first step when you come in for evaluation is to assess why the crown fell out. We will identify the underlying problem and address this so that does not happen again. We will determine if the original crown is able to be used again, or if a new crown needs to be fabricated. If there is decay underneath the crown, the tooth will need to be filed and modified to remove any decayed part. In this case, a new crown will be necessary and the old crown will not fit. We will take a new mold and send it to our dental laboratory to fabricate a new porcelain crown. Obviously, a new porcelain crown will replace the old one, matching the original shape, size and color. We will then ask you to come back in 1-2 weeks to permanently bond the new porcelain crown into place.
Can I get a cavity or tooth decay underneath my cosmetic porcelain crown?
Normally, a porcelain crown is able to completely seal a tooth and prevent decay. However, sometimes plaque may build up at the root of the tooth that is missed by brushing and flossing. This may allow new decay to occur under the crown and under the gums. If this happens, we will need to remove the crown, file that tooth and replace the crown, assuming there is enough tooth left. We recommend that you come in twice per year for your professional dental cleanings and checkups as well as floss and brush at home daily to prevent this from happening.
What is the difference between a cosmetic porcelain crown and a dental implant crown?
A cosmetic crown and a dental implant crown are essentially the same thing. The difference lies in what the crown is attached to. The cosmetic crown by itself is attached to the remaining tooth that is being covered after it is prepared. In a dental implant crown, the crown is attached to the dental implant and abutment that are placed into your bone. A dental implant crown is utilized when the entire tooth needs to be removed. The porcelain crown is placed over a tooth that is filed but not fully removed. For more information about dental implants and crowns see our dental implant page or click here.
Do I need a cosmetic porcelain crown if I had a root canal?
Many times, a root canaled tooth requires the use of a crown. However, not every tooth that has undergone a root canal procedure needs a crown. If we are able to preserve enough of the natural tooth after a root canal, a tooth colored filling or porcelain filling may be utilized. If we need to remove most of the tooth, these will not be enough, and a crown becomes necessary.
How do I care for my cosmetic porcelain crown?
After receiving a porcelain crown, we will advise you to continue your usual regimen of brushing and flossing at home daily. We also recommend continuing to come in twice per year for your regular dental checkups and professional dental cleanings.
What is the cost for a cosmetic porcelain crown in Midtown Manhattan?
The one-time fee for a porcelain crown is $1,800 at Sachar dental NYC. This cost covers both visits necessary to prepare the tooth on the first visit, and to permanently bond the porcelain crown on the second visit. It will be a minimum of two visits, and sometimes requires more. This cost covers preparation of the tooth removing all of the decay, taking a mold of your tooth, and preparing and installing a temporary crown.
If any follow-up visits and necessary after this, they also covered in that one-time fee. Most PPO dental insurances cover porcelain crown at 50. We will submit a claim to your dental insurance and receive the insurance portion directly from them.
Does my dental insurance cover the cost of a cosmetic porcelain crown?
Most PPO dental insurance plans cover the cost of a porcelain crown at 50. As always, at Sachar Dental NYC, we will check with your dental insurance to determine your benefits. We will then be able tell you at the time your visit, exactly what your out-of-pocket costs will be. On the day of your visit, you will only be responsible for this amount. We will then submit a claim to your dental insurance company in order to collect the insurance portion of payment directly from them.
Do you offer payment plans for cosmetic porcelain crowns?
At Sachar Dental NYC, we offer interest free financing through Lending Club and Care Credit. In 15 minutes, we will let you know if you are approved for interest-free financing. These options will enable you to make payments over the next 12-18 months without any interest charged.
Can I use flexible spending dollars or medical savings accounts for these charges?
Yes, you may be able to use your medical savings accounts or flexible spending dollars to cover charges related to your cosmetic porcelain crowns. At the time of your service, we will provide you with all the necessary documentation and receipts.
Why are we the best cosmetic dentists in NYC for cosmetic porcelain crowns?
The cosmetic dentists at Sachar Dental NYC all have extensive cosmetic dentistry training at Spear Education for Advanced Dentistry in Scottsdale, Arizona. This advanced an extensive training includes comprehensive training in the management of cosmetic dental procedures including porcelain cosmetic crowns, porcelain veneers and smile makeovers.
At Sachar Dental NYC, we always utilize the least invasive procedures and the most conservative approaches to solving any problem. In the case of porcelain crowns, we always try to remove or file as little of the natural tooth as possible. We will first determine if a porcelain crown is necessary or if the problem can be solved with a tooth-colored filling, or porcelain filling. Additionally, after we perform a root canal procedure, we evaluate whether a crown is necessary or we use a porcelain filling or a tooth-colored filling. We always use the least toxic materials possible and highest quality materials when making our porcelain crowns.
Many dentists can complete extensive training and have years of experience, however, to achieve such a high success rate, our cosmetic dentists are truly artists when it comes to creating porcelain crowns. In addition, our cosmetic dentists possess the manual dexterity to turn their artistic visions into reality.
Another reason for our very high success rate and our patient’s satisfaction with our porcelain crowns is our choice of dental laboratories in New York City. For cosmetic cases, we use a specific laboratory that is the best in New York City. For all of our porcelain crown cases we work with our experienced and skilled dental technician who is also truly an artist. His individual style, attention to detail, and experience allows him to excel above any other cosmetic dental laboratory technician that we have experienced.
For the more complex cases, we have a prosthodontist specialist on our team and in our office who has over 20 years of experience in making porcelain crowns, and performing smile makeovers. He is well-equipped to handle even the most complex cosmetic dentistry cases. And finally, at Sachar Dental NYC our dentists and dental assistants always exhibited excellent bedside manner, empathy and compassion.
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