All-ceramic crowns are a type of dental crown. A dental crown can be applied on top of the affected tooth, restoring its appearance and helping to keep it healthy.
The cost of a dental crown depends on the material of the crown itself, if other dental treatments are involved, and where you choose to have your procedure done.
Crowns involve the placement of a tooth-shaped cap on top of an affected area, cementing it in place. They tend to be prescribed for a wide variety of patients. If patients have worn down their teeth over time, or if a large cavity has developed, then a crown may be the best remedy.
Sometimes, older fillings start to weaken an entire tooth leading to the need for extra strengthening and crowns are often needed following root canal treatment. They can also be applied for purely cosmetic reasons. For instance, they are a popular way to conceal discolouration or misshapen teeth. A crown is also applied on top of the abutment when a patient gets a dental implant procedure.
At the first appointment, a dentist will shape the tooth to create a shape that suits a crown.
After that, the dentist may make a mould in the shape of the tooth using a special form of dental "putty". Impressions are also taken of the teeth opposite the one being crowned, so that the dentist can ensure that the crown grinds smoothly against the opposing teeth.
In some cases, dentists can also use computer imaging software to take a snapshot of the affected tooth, which is sent to a laboratory which uses specialist software to assemble a crown.
In most instances, labs receive the impression and create hard copies, usually out of plaster. This hard mould is then used to create a metal, resin or ceramic crown, which is sent back to the dentist.
The dentist now cements the crown in place, and may need to trim it slightly to handle any imperfections in the preparation process.
The duration of the procedure depends on the reason for the treatment. If there is extensive tooth damage, a dentist may need to build up your tooth with an intermediate filling so that it is the correct shape for a crown to be applied.
Generally, you will attend a first appointment where the damaged tooth is ground into the appropriate shape. You will then receive a temporary crown for use while the permanent version is created.
A few weeks after that, you will need to return again for the application. The temporary cap is removed, and the moulded crown is then cemented in place. In both cases, the appointments should last no longer than 1 hour, and can be as quick as 30 minutes, although the whole process can take 3-4 weeks.
However, when traveling abroad to a clinic that accepts international patients, the whole process can be completed in as little as 1 week depending on the number of crowns to be made.
Dental crowns come in a range of different materials. Permanent crowns are usually constructed from precious metals like gold or platinum, cobalt or nickel alloys, resin, or ceramics combined with metal.
Ceramics or porcelain is a popular alternative for patients who want their crown to match up perfectly with their natural teeth. Modern porcelain crowns can be precisely coloured to match the patient's teeth. For all-ceramic crowns, the entire thickness is made from 100% ceramic. This allows the crown to have a greater thickness of translucent porcelain, which provides a more natural, glossy and shiny appearance.
Crowns can also be made from other materials:
Zirconia Crowns Zirconia crowns are durable, long lasting and well tolerated by the human body.
All-Metal Crowns All-Metal Crowns are typically used for hidden molar teeth due to their limited aesthetic appeal.
Temporary Crowns Temporary crowns are used before permanent crowns are placed.
Gold-Ceramic Crowns Gold is often a preferred material for crowns due to its strength and the fact that it rarely irritates gum tissue.
Ceramic-Metal Crowns Ceramic-metal crowns are a popular option for individuals who are looking for a combination of strength and good aesthetics.
Additionally, resin crowns are available at a lower cost than either metals or ceramics. While they can be coloured to give a natural look, they tend to wear away more quickly.
In some cases, crowns cannot be applied, and a middle ground between fillings and crowns is used. Also known as "onlays", these caps are simply placed directly onto the tooth, with no extra mould required.
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