Single Porcelain Crown
A crown or cap is indicated when there is sufficient damage, decay or trauma to a tooth’s integrity. When more than 60% of a tooth is damaged, has a large broken down filling in it or an entire cusp is missing (broken or decayed) the tooth loses its structural support. The tooth then has a high likelihood of cracking. A crown can literally hold the tooth together, by surrounding the tooth and providing support.
A crown can be made of various materials - porcelain, metal or a combination of the two. There are also newer materials being used called Zirconia, that are as strong as metal but have the esthetics of porcelain. These crowns are metal free.
Frequently Asked QuestionsWhat materials are crowns made of?
A metal crown can be precious, non-precious or semi-precious. The higher gold content the better. Gold, platinum and palladium are much more biocompatible (healthier) than semi-precious or non-precious metals, which can contain nickel, copper or other scrap metals. Dr. Weisbard uses high content gold, precious metals only for her metal crowns. These crowns provide excellent marginal integrity, strength and can last a very long time.
A porcelain crown is entirely porcelain. These crowns provide the best esthetics, translucency and natural appearance. They resemble the natural tooth structure best but lack strength. These crowns are best in the front of the mouth where esthetics are most important and chewing forces are lower.
A porcelain to gold crown is an excellent choice for the majority of back teeth as it provides the esthetics of porcelain with the support and strength of metal. These crown are made with a metal (precious metals) core with porcelain baked over it.
Zirconia crowns have a high strength non-metal core with porcelain baked over it. These are also an excellent choice for strength and esthetics.
Cerac - This is a fairly new system that can design and mill a custom crown in a single visit to your dentist. The dentist prepares the tooth in the normal way before fitting a crown. Instead of taking an impression, sending it to a laboratory to custom make the crown, the dentist takes a digital image of the prepared tooth. This information is converted into a three dimensional computerized model of your tooth, which is used as a guide for the computer to design the new crown. The information then goes to a milling machine that fabricates the new crown from a ceramic block.
Porcelain may be the most esthetic but porcelain fused to gold or all gold provides the strength and durability needed for heavy chewing. These are better choices for patients who may grind their teeth as well.
Have other questions? Ask Dr. Weisbard!