Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in the entire human body. Unfortunately, it’s not invincible. Teeth can break or crack for a variety of reasons, including excessive clenching, old or leaky dental work, or untreated tooth decay.
When they do fracture, you need to cover the remaining tooth structure in order to avoid an extraction. Simply trying to patch over the damage with something like a filling won’t last. Typically, a protective dental crown (aka “cap”) is the best or only option available.
Traditionally, the dental crown treatment process requires two visits about two weeks apart. We prep your tooth, an impression is taken and sent to the lab, and the final crown is placed about two weeks later. But our dentist in Long Beach offers state-of-the-art technology that allows us to provide dental restorations near you, including single visit crowns.
Same Day Crowns: How it Works
Same day crowns in Long Beach are possible because of advanced CEREC technology. Our dentist near you utilizes 3D CAD/CAM imaging equipment (CEREC) to scan, digitally design, and mill a custom ceramic crown in one visit.
Since CEREC is able to input a digital scan of your tooth and convert it into a 3D model, there is no need to send a set of impressions to an offsite lab. From there, our dentist in Long Beach selects the best color of ceramic to match your adjacent teeth. The ceramic block is set into the milling equipment and a crown is carved while you catch up on other dental treatments or sit back and relax.
Advantages of CEREC Digital Crowns
How to Tell if Your Tooth is Cracked
Diagnosing a cracked tooth can sometimes be extremely difficult. In fact, there’s a condition known as “cracked tooth syndrome” that may be hard to identify without special diagnostic tools.
If you suspect that your tooth is cracked, pay careful attention when you’re biting or chewing with it. Do you feel a “twinge” or any type of odd sensation when applying or releasing pressure? Is that tooth hypersensitive to certain types of foods, drinks, or temperatures?
When something seems “off” about your tooth, it’s best to go ahead and schedule an exam with our Long Beach dentist. Even if you’re not quite able to put your finger on the exact location. Sometimes teeth can cause referred pain in a general area, making the source of the discomfort more challenging to identify.
During your exam, we’ll use special tactics and imaging to screen for microscopic cracks in your tooth, so that we can catch them before a larger area fractures off.
Do I Need a Dental Crown?
The best time to get a Long Beach dental crown is before your tooth breaks. By scheduling routine checkups at our dental office near you, we can intercept possible weak points before your enamel cracks.
We often recommend dental crowns on teeth recently treated with root canal therapy, if there’s a large area of decay, your tooth shows a significant amount of wear, or has a very large, old filling.
If your tooth still has a significant amount of intact enamel but needs something more comprehensive than a basic filling, CEREC can also be used to create custom inlays and onlays (also called “three-quarter crowns.”)
Other Things to Keep in Mind
Depending on the extent of cracking that has taken place, severely broken teeth may also require endodontic therapy (root canal treatment) prior to covering them with a crown. Particularly if the crack reaches into the nerve chamber. Otherwise, bacteria can seep through the fracture and damage the nerve tissues, ultimately resulting in an abscessed tooth.
Reserve an Exam Today
Are you in pain? Do you have a broken or cracked tooth? Contact our dentist in Long Beach today to reserve a same-day CEREC crown consultation.