A crown (‘cap’) is a covering placed over the remaining part of a prepared tooth, making it strong and giving it the shape of a natural tooth. Crowns are an ideal way to rebuild teeth which have been broken, or have been weakened by decay or a very large filling. They can also be used to improve the appearance of teeth. In addition, teeth diagnosed as having an early crack can be crowned to prevent them from splitting.
Teeth which have received root canal treatment usually need to be crowned. Modern dental materials allow crowns including ones for back teeth to be manufactured fully from ceramic materials without an additional underlying layer of metal for extra strength giving the crowns a very natural appearance. In fact, they look and feel so natural even you will have difficulty telling them apart from your own teeth! They are also advantageous if you are known to have an allergy or sensitivity to metals.
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Veneers allow you to change the appearance, colour, shape, size, position, rotations, texture, lustre and the form of teeth. They are especially the treatment of choice when your teeth do not require large restorations or large amounts of dentistry. They are used in smile makeovers to enhance the way your teeth look. They can also be used as part of a treatment plan that incorporates other treatments like porcelain crowns and implants. This is very common in people who have different types of dentistry in their smile but who wish to have a more uniform smile with teeth that match each other.
The impression and shade information are passed to a specialist dental laboratory. Using this information, they will carefully construct the veneer to ensure that it fits in perfectly with your other teeth. About a week or two after your first appointment your dentist will see you for a second time to check that your new veneer is a good fit and that the shade is a good match for your other teeth. The veneer is then fixed in place using a special bonding agent.
Your dentist will remove a little of the outer enamel of the tooth so that the veneer will bond securely in place. Next, your dentist will take an “impression” (ie make a mould of) your teeth and record the shade of the adjacent teeth so that the veneer is a perfect match. Only a very small amount of tooth is removed in the preparation process, so a temporary veneer probably won’t be needed while the permanent veneer is being made – you also probably won’t need any anaesthetic.
Veneers should last for many years this does heavily depend on how you care for them. Consider the daily habits that could be affecting your veneers, and you'll be able to extend their wear.