Tooth Crown Pain - Whats Your Best Solution?.


    Posted by Dr. William Linger, DDS, MAGD

    tooth crown pain

    You've probably at some point gone to your dentist only to be told that one of your teeth has substantial damage, more than a simple filling will fix.  Your dentist might recommend a crown, but he or she might not tell you the downside to getting one.  Before you agree to the procedure, you need to know what it entails, and that there are effective alternatives.

    What's the Downside of Crowns?

    Getting a crown will generally fix your dental problem, but it does have its negatives.  As Healthy Dentistry explains, those negatives can be substantial:

    "If a tooth has too much decay or is too broken to be fixed with just a filling, the traditional way to fix or repair the tooth is a crown…the technique requires the drilling of approximately 75% of the tooth…Often, the drilling goes below the gum line, leaving the gums very sore and traumatized. Finally, the tooth is covered with a porcelain or metal crown cap, usually cemented on, leaving foreign material below the gum (this causes a lot of permanent irritation (gum disease)."

    Let's break that down.  When you agree to a crown, your dentist will do the following:

    • He'll remove a lot of your tooth which is still healthy: this isn't something you should casually agree to.  In fact, your goal should be to retain as much of your existing tooth as possible.
    • He'll drill below the gum line: drilling below the gum line (referred to as "sub-gingival" drilling) can lead to a host of problems, everything from inflammation and bleeding to permanent gum damage. 
    • He'll cement your crown below the gum line: this is another problem you should try to avoid.  When any foreign substance is implanted below your gum line, it can cause problems in the future.

    What Other Choices Do I Have?

    There are circumstance when a crown is your best option, such as those in which the health of your other teeth could be compromised.  In general, however, you should always consider other options. 

    Fortunately, there are effective solutions for badly damaged teeth, solutions which are less invasive and carry substantially less risk than crowns.  Two in particular are dental inlays and onlays:

    What Is a Dental Inlay?

    A dental inlay is in some ways similar to a filling but used when there is more damage to the tooth.  For example, an inlay might be your best option if you have a broken or substantially decayed tooth, but that damage does not extend to the cusp of the tooth.  You might also opt for an inlay if conventional drilling and filling are likely to make the tooth too weak.

    In the procedure, your dentist will first remove any decay, then take an impression of the remaining part of your tooth and send it to a laboratory.  The laboratory uses that impression to create the inlay, which is usually made of composites or porcelain and will be the same color as the color of your tooth (for cosmetic reasons).  You'll have a permanent (and attractive) solution without the risks of getting a crown.

    What Is a Dental Onlay?

    A dental onlay is the right choice if your tooth has more damage, especially when that damage extends to the cusp of your tooth.  As with the inlay, the first step will be drilling to remove any decay you have. 

    He'll then make an impression of your tooth (just as he would for an inlay) which goes to the laboratory where.  He'll also give you a temporary onlay.  The lab will create your new onlay and send it back to the dentist who will fit it to your tooth.

    It's Important to Choose the Right Dentist

    The dentist you choose has extensive medical training; you don't.  That means you need to choose a dentist who will give you all the facts you need to make the most prudent judgment.  You also want a dentist who will make use of the latest dental technologies.  Above all, you want a dentist who is caring enough to make your dental visit as comfortable as possible.

    William Linger, DDS, MAGD is a highly-skilled professional who performs comprehensive cosmetic and reconstructive surgery in Charlotte.  He and his staff work hard to ensure your visit is convenient and focus on both the latest technologies and the use of practices like sedation dentistry to ensure your comfort.  To learn more about Dr. Linger's dental practice, contact us today.

    Topics: Dentistry

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