Losing a tooth to infection (decay) or trauma can be a painful experience. Imagine that you are in a dental chair and just got a new tooth or a bridge fitted. It is a joyous experience, almost like a newfound lease of life, to be able to eat better and look better.
However, even after a few days to a week, you realize that the new crown is just not settling down completely. There is a constant sensitivity that exists and is not allowing you to enjoy the new tooth. There are various reasons that the new crown can be sensitive, some of them including:
- A high point - On the new crown, there could be small points that do not allow for a bite as earlier. This can lead to sensitivity and minor jaw discomfort.
- Improper fit with exposed dentin: This can happen at the neck area, where the crown is not fitting the tooth, leaving a small part of dentin exposed. This can lead to sensitivity once the crown is fixed in.
- Other decayed teeth: If there is a decayed tooth adjacent to the crown, it could be confusing and sometimes difficult to pinpoint the exact area.
If it persists for more than a week, check with your dentist on the following:
- Severity of decay: The extent of decay in the first place should be considered, especially if you have had a crown as a result of extensive tooth decay. If it was involving a large portion of the dentin, the changes of having sensitivity are high, even after crown placement. In these cases, there could be a silent abscess which may never manifest as symptoms but can cause a gnawing sensitivity issue with each bite.
- Area of decay: Root caries and cervical caries are more prone to have sensitivity compared to the crown of the tooth. The enamel layer in these areas is thin and the chances of dentinal involvement is high. The rate at which the decay will reach the pulp and cause pain is also higher.
- Type of dental treatment: If extensive metal work is done, the sensitivity might last longer than a week, which is the norm.
- Triggering factors: Make a note of what triggers the sensitivity, hot, cold or sweets.
Management: As mentioned, expect the sensitivity with your new crown to last for up to a week. In some cases, it may be longer, depending on, as noted above, the severity of the original decay, the area, triggers, etc.
While some cases may be managed with a small trim of the crown, some may need the crown to be re-fitted, and some may even require re-treating the tooth completely.
A dental crown is a tool that is often used by dentists to fix a variety of problems that can alter the appearance of your teeth and your smile. This cap-like object is placed over the tooth to cover weak teeth as well as chipped, discoloured and broken teeth. It can also be used when a filling has left a large open space in the tooth that has been hollowed out in the course of the treatment. There are many kinds of crowns available today including ceramic, metal, stainless steel, porcelain, milled and even entirely resin crowns. While the suitably of each one finally depends on the patient, the most commonly used crowns are ceramic and metal-ceramic crowns. Read on to know the difference between the two.
Definition: While a ceramic crown is made up of a glass-like substance like porcelain, a metal-ceramic crown is one that is basically metal, which has been fused with porcelain. These are called porcelain fused to metal crowns and usually have a metal base that forms the interior of the crown.
Durability: The metal-ceramic crowns are known for their durability with plenty of strength and a better fit. Meanwhile, the ceramic crowns are not considered to be as robust due to the porcelain makeup of the structure. They are best suited for the front teeth and cannot really sustain for a long period as far as the insides of the jaws go, as the chewing and biting motion can render cracks and chips in the surface after a certain point of time.
Aesthetics: While the ceramic crown is definitely a better and more natural-looking option, the metal-ceramic crown has a metal side, which can show up as well. It may not be too different as far as looks go, due to the porcelain coating of the crown. Yet, one has to remember that due to the durability factor, the metal interior will hold on much longer than the ceramic crown as the latter may start to show when the gums begin to recede.
Fabrication: Both these types of crowns are fabricated using pretty much the same procedure. Yet, the structural weakness in the metal-ceramic crowns may come from the fact that the fabrication procedure is slightly more complex as the metal has to be fused into the ceramic structure of the crown. Both types of crowns have a similar thickness and lustre at the end of the day.
Expenses: The ceramic crown is a slightly less expensive option as compared to the metal-ceramic crown mainly due to the material used as well as the fabrication process.