An Introduction to Cosmetic Dentistry: Facts, Questions and More

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How Dentists Use Crowns to Repair Your Smile

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You may have been told by your dentist that you should consider the fitment of a dental crown, in order to improve your appearance when you smile. What is involved in this cosmetic procedure? 

To start off with your dentist has to prepare your existing teeth in order to accommodate the new crown. The teeth will have to be shaped in a certain way so that the crown can be fitted on top. Following local anaesthetic, a special tool is used to grind down the teeth accordingly. The objective here is to create a solid base, on top of which the crown will sit. This is very precise work and the dentist will be creating a tapered appearance. The dentist may also use some filler in order to come up with the perfect base.  

Creating an Impression

Once this is complete it will be necessary to take an impression, which will then be used to make the crown. A small amount of cord is used at the base of the teeth in order to retract the gums slightly so that a more accurate mold can be made. A special tray is filled with putty and is then pressed onto the area, where it is left to sit for a while. The putty within the tray will slowly set and will create a very accurate impression of the area. Once it is removed by the dentist it is sent off to a lab, where the actual crown itself is made. You will be asked to come back to the dentist in a couple of weeks.

Before you leave, however, the dentist will give you a temporary crown, which is intended to protect the area during this time and also to enable you to eat normally. This is put in place using a special type of cement that can easily be "unglued"

Making Fine Adjustments

When you meet up again the temporary crown will be removed and the new one fitted. The dentist will take some time to ensure that the fitment is perfectly correct. He or she may ask you to bite down occasionally and don't be surprised if the crown is removed and replaced several times until it's right. Then, you will be given a mirror in order to have a look at the finished product itself, to ensure that you are perfectly happy with its fitment and its appearance.

When everybody's happy, the cosmetic dentist will then use permanent cement to make sure that the crown fits in place comfortably and securely.