Bakersfield Porcelain Crowns
If you have badly decayed or severely worn teeth, porcelain crowns can restore them and make them look healthy again. And with today’s high-strength dental ceramics, you can get natural-looking crowns that last.
What Is a Porcelain Crown?
A porcelain crown, often called a “cap,” is a tooth-shaped cover for a damaged tooth. A crown covers the entire tooth—from the gumline up. A well-made crown is customized to restore your tooth’s appearance and how it fits into your bite.
Although traditional porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns are strong, the metal foundation blocks translucence and eventually shows through as a dark line at your gumline. Yet, translucent all-porcelain crowns are not strong enough to withstand the stress of biting, chewing, or grinding on molars. But today’s high-tech ceramics are extraordinarily strong and produce natural-looking results.
When Are Crowns Used?
Dental crowns can protect damaged teeth, restore dental implants, or form a dental bridge.
- Protect a damaged tooth – When a tooth is severely decayed, worn down, or broken, a crown will cover the entire tooth.
- Restore a dental implant – A crown is attached to an implant abutment, or connector.
- Make a dental bridge – Crowns on the teeth adjacent to a missing tooth can have a false tooth suspended between them.
How Are Crowns Made?
Making a dental crown involves a series of steps. During the process, we will do the following:
- Take x-rays of your teeth
- Remove decay and damage from your tooth
- Shave down your tooth on the top and sides to reshape it in preparation for a crown
- Use a handheld digital scanner to take impressions of your teeth
- Make a temporary crown and bond it to your tooth
- Send the impressions and instruction to a lab for a ceramist to craft a custom crown
- Remove the temporary crown, clean your tooth, and place the final crown to check the color and fit
- Bond your new crown to your tooth if you approve the color and fit
Types of Crowns
Woolf Dental uses high-tech, high-strength ceramics for crowns. We offer e.max crowns for anterior (front) teeth and zirconia crowns for posterior (back) teeth.
e.max crowns are made of lithium disilicate, a highly aesthetic, extremely strong glass-ceramic. e. max crowns have two layers—a strong, durable inner core and an outer layer that our master ceramist crafts to beautifully match your natural tooth color, translucence, and gloss.
A master ceramist artfully layers porcelain in varying colors, opacity, and translucence to make the crown look natural and vibrant. Using feldspathic porcelain for dental restorations is a craft honed by only a few highly trained cosmetic dentists and ceramists.
Nicknamed “ceramic steel,” zirconium dioxide is a high-strength ceramic that protects severely decayed or damaged teeth. A ceramist shapes a pure-zirconia block—monolithic zirconia—to make a custom crown for a molar tooth that withstands the stresses of chewing and grinding.
How Long Do Crowns Last?
While the standard used by insurance companies is that a crown should last at least five years, a well-made crown that is well cared-for will last a lot longer than that. Some factors that can affect how long a crown lasts include:
- How well it fits – Precise impressions of your teeth, conservative tooth preparation, and careful construction of the crown provide an accurate fit. A close fit minimizes the gap between the crown and the tooth that could attract bacteria and provide a starting place for new decay.
- Occlusion and bite – Designing the crown to harmonize with how your teeth move against each other and fit together when you bite down prevents the crown and opposing teeth from becoming weak and breaking.
- How well you take care of it – Good oral hygiene and watching the frequency of snacking will help prevent new decay that could undermine the crown.
These before-and-after photos of our patient’s smile are an example of how natural-looking crowns can enhance your smile.
Inlays and Onlays
A ceramic crown is not the only way to restore a damaged or decayed tooth. Instead of shaving your tooth down for a crown, sometimes, we can bond an inlay or an onlay to your tooth.
- Inlay – An inlay is a dental filling made of porcelain.
- Onlay – An onlay fits in the tooth like a filling and extends to one or more cusps on the biting surface of a tooth.
What’s the inlay/onlay process?
- Remove the decay or damage from your tooth and old fillings
- Take impressions of your tooth with our optical scanner
- Place a temporary restoration
- Send the impression to our ceramist to make a custom porcelain inlay or onlay that matches your tooth color and fits your bite
- At a second appointment, remove the temporary restoration and clean your tooth
- Place the inlay or onlay and check it for fit and bite
- Bond it to your tooth
The bond between an inlay or onlay and your tooth forms a tight seal and strengthens your tooth.
If you are interested in protecting your teeth with natural-looking crowns, inlay, or onlays, contact our office to schedule an appointment for an exam or complete our appointment request form.
“Woolf Dental was efficient, friendly, and explanatory in replacing my temporary crown with a permanent one. The dentist fit my crown perfectly!” — Linda Y.