I am not sure about one aspect of my dentist’s recommendation. I’m losing a tooth and we were looking at replacement options. She recommended I replace it with a dental implant and later place a CEREC crown on it after the healing period. I’ve been doing some research. I do think the implant is the right replacement; however, I have heard that CEREC crowns aren’t a good option for front teeth. What do you think?
You and your dentist are wise to pick a dental implant to replace your tooth. It is hands down the best tooth replacement available. When done properly, it will be like having your natural, healthy tooth back in place. As for the CEREC crown, I do understand your concern. While they are all-porcelain, they are formed from a single block of porcelain, which can give them a flat appearance. This is absolutely fine for teeth that aren’t up front. When it comes to front teeth, though, that can make them look fake next to the adjacent teeth. Our natural teeth aren’t the same color across the board. Parts of your teeth are more translucent than the rest. Those differences make a huge difference in its appearance.
There are a couple of solutions to this.
First, if your dentist is an expert cosmetic dentist, say like an AACD accredited dentist, they will understand how to use color theory to vary the appearance of the crowns to make them look more natural. Additionally, they have the materials on hand and the experience to do it.
However, AACD accredited dentists are in the top 1% of cosmetic dentists. What do you do if your dentist isn’t among the dentists who know how to do this? In that case, I’d ask your dentist to switch to a traditional all-porcelain crown. This is formed from several different blocks of porcelain allowing for the variety you see in natural teeth.
One word of caution. Even using the traditional method, it is not easy to get a front tooth to match its neighbor. Make sure your dentist allows you to have a good look at this crown on your tooth before it is permanently bonded. Look at it in several different types of lighting to be certain it really matches. If it doesn’t, make her send it back to the lab (or the CEREC machine) depending on which method you choose.
This blog is brought to you by Tulsa Dentist Dr. Jerome Cha.