Tooth Crowns – not just for kings

The word crown comes from the rounded extension above a natural tooth. It is the visible portion of the tooth. To withstand the enormous pressure of years of chewing, a real tooth’s crown is covered with enamel, the hardest natural material in our bodies.
An artificial crown replaces the natural crown of diseased teeth. It can be made of different materials, like gold, ceramic, titanium or other metals and plastic. It is considered a tooth-preserving measure and is thus not a denture, although it may be part of dentures. For example, in combination with an implant.

When is an artificial crown necessary?

  • The most common indication is tooth decay. Enamel is the hardest material in our bodies, but it suffers from erosion by acids. The acid in this case, is a by-product of sugar breakdown by decay-causing bacteria. Once the caries penetrate the enamel, the bacteria no longer feed off plaque, but off the organic dentin tissue. If left untreated, it is a self-sustaining process that can lead to the inflammation of the root. If tooth decay is not treated in time at the dentist and the affected tooth is not provided with a filling, tooth decay can completely erode the tooth. Teeth that have large fillings or have had multiple fillings weaken with time and must be crowned.
  • Accidents leaving teeth strongly compromised often require crowning.
  • Over a prolonged period of time individual problems like teeth grinding, reflux (backflow of acidic stomach contents) or bulimia can attack enamel. The natural tooth crowns literally dissolve and wash away or are ground away by other teeth. Enamel can disappear nearly completely. Teeth get smaller and cause malfunctions in the jaw joint through a lowered bite plane. In these cases, a whole restoration of the jaw including a reconstruction of the occlusal plane is necessary with several partial or full crowns. Modern adhesive techniques permit a minimally invasive approach. Only the missing parts of the teeth have to be replaced and stabilized with composites. This is called tabletops.
  • Root treated teeth lose their strength over time and become brittle. A crown prevents possible fracture of the tooth.
  • Lost or missing teeth cause a gap in the row of teeth. This can be closed with a bridge. A bridge is attached to artificial dental crowns of adjacent teeth. Depending on the size of the tooth gap, you will need implants.

What material is best for the crown?

Ceramic – The material of choice

ZahnkronenCeramic is not only highly tolerated (no known allergies), but also extremely stable and the color can be perfectly adapted to your own teeth. Moreover, the very smooth surface of ceramic reduces the accumulation of plaque, thus contributing to a better oral hygiene. Ceramic protects the tooth with its temperature insulating properties.

Thus, a ceramic crown meets the highest requirements and is seamlessly integrated into the existing dentition. In our office we use the highly modern CEREC 3Dmethod, which allows us to manufacture the required crown in a single session and place it in that session.

This saves time and cost. A fun feature is that you can witness how your crown is milled from a solid block in the waiting room of our office!

Cerec by Dentanova – Always up to date on modern dental technology

With the revolutionary method of Cerec (Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics or Ceramic Reconstruction) we can offer you the following services:

  • Crowns or implants made of full ceramic (e.max)
  • Inlay / onlay / crown restorations made of plastic / plastic ceramic hybrid or full ceramic, depending on the indication
  • Veneers and minimally invasive adhesive bridges for the highest aesthetic demands
  • Dental bridges: three or more part bridges (zirconium). Bridges with four parts and above are produced in cooperation with our specialized Cerec dental laboratory. They are prepared, manufactured and fitted in two sessions, eliminating the need for temporaries.

CEREC is a CAD / CAM method for restoration of the biting surface of the teeth. It was originally developed in 1980 by Prof. Mörmann at the Zurich University. This method allows us to save time and efficiently design and manufacture computerized ceramic restorations. Since the rather humble beginnings technology has developed, working with three-dimensional images. Thus, very precise dental restorations have become possible. It is one of the most studied modern methods of dentistry and allows us to manufacture and fit the necessary ceramic filling in a single session.
This is done by using an optical image as the basis for creating individual inlays, onlays and crowns on the computer. These are then milled from a ceramic block with a special milling machine. As well as the usual feldspar minerals we also work with e.max CAD. This is a lithium disilicate glass ceramic block with particular characteristics. In its pre-crystallized state, the material is blue-purple. From the block, it is milled into the desired shape. After that the ceramic is custom painted and fired in a special oven at 840°C. The resulting change in physical state creates an exceptionally stable and aesthetic ceramic.

praxisalltag71The e.max CAD blocks have a natural brightness. Because of their translucency (letting light through) and the range of colors they come in, it is easy to make fully anatomical, sturdy, aesthetic-looking restorations (crowns). it is a two-stage procedure, as the restorations must be fired after having been produced. If you want to avoid the usual waiting time, this method allows you to get the entire treatment in one day with a break of only 1-2 hours while the crown is fired. In addition to its excellent characteristics CEREC technology saves time and money.

Metal crowns – aesthetically obsolete

Veneer Crowns - outdated compromises

steel, titanium and gold crowns are available, but gold crowns are certainly the best-known representatives of the category of metal crowns. Although durability and compatibility with metal crowns speak entirely for themselves, veneer crowns and ceramic crowns have them outstripped by their appearance.
However, due to their low cost steel crowns are still being used today in poorer countries. Titanium crowns are more expensive, difficult to align and of a gray-black color. Gold crowns enchant the observer only in very limited cultural or musical circles - no matter how beautiful the gums may look - and only make sense if you invest in rising gold prices.

In order to make aesthetically questionable metal crowns look like normal teeth, so-called veneering crowns were designed, whose visible part is veneered with a tooth-colored material.
Veneer crowns are therefore composed of two different materials. The base is made of metal, which is then covered with a tooth-colored ceramic or plastic veneer. A not easy task, which is normally no longer necessary since the emergence of all-ceramic crowns.
Metal-ceramic crowns may be considered in special cases where the tooth border is very deep below the gum line. In all other cases aesthetics, biocompatibility and price speak clearly for the all-ceramic crown.