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Posts for tag: crowns

By Kathleen M. Geipe, DDS, PA
September 29, 2021
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: crowns   bridgework  
AreImplantsaNo-GoforYouConsiderTheseOtherRestorationOptions

Our primary aim as dentists is to preserve teeth. There are times, however, when preserving a tooth is no longer worth the effort and we must recommend removing it. Fortunately, extracted teeth can be replaced with a functional and attractive restoration.

Today's top tooth-replacement option is the dental implant. Composed of a titanium metal post imbedded into the jawbone, a single dental implant can replace an individual tooth or a series of implants can support other restorations for multiple teeth. Besides being incredibly life-like, dental implants are highly durable and can last for decades.

But dental implants aren't an optimal choice for everyone. Their cost often matches their status as the premier tooth replacement method. And because they require a minimum amount of bone for proper implantation, they're not always feasible for patients with extensive bone loss.

But even if dental implants aren't right for you, and you want a fixed restoration rather than dentures, you still have options. What's more, they've been around for decades!

One is a bonded crown, which works particularly well for a tooth excessively damaged by decay, excessive wear or fractures. After removing all of the damaged portions and shaping the remaining tooth, we cement a life-like crown, custom created for that particular tooth, over the remaining structure.

Besides improving appearance, a crown also protects the tooth and restores its function. One thing to remember, though, is although the crown itself is impervious to disease, the remainder of the natural tooth isn't. It's important then to brush and floss around crowned teeth like any other tooth and see a dentist regularly for cleanings.

Dental bridges are a fixed solution for extracted teeth. It's composed of prosthetic teeth to replace those missing bonded together with supporting crowns on both ends. These crowned teeth are known as abutments, and, depending on how many teeth are being replaced, we may need to increase the number of abutments to support the bridge.

Although durable, crowns or bridges typically don't match the longevity of an implant. And, implants don't require the permanent alteration of support teeth as is necessary with a bridge. But when the choice of implants isn't on the table, these traditional restorations can be an effective dental solution.

If you would like more information on crown or bridge restorations, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Crowns & Bridgework.”

By Kathleen M. Geipe, DDS, PA
September 19, 2021
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: crowns   celebrity smiles  
HowCelineDionOvercameHerSmileObstacle

For over three decades, Celine Dion has amazed audiences and fans with her powerful singing voice. Best known for her recording of "My Heart Will Go On," the theme song for the movie Titanic, Dion has amassed global record sales topping 200 million. In her early singing days, though, she struggled with one particular career obstacle: an unattractive smile.

The Canadian-born performer had a number of dental defects including crooked and discolored teeth, and—most prominent of all—abnormally large cuspid or "canine" teeth (located on either side of the four front incisors). They were so noticeable that one Quebec celebrity magazine gave her the unflattering nickname "Canine Dion."

This isn't an unusual problem. Since human canines are already the longest teeth in the mouth, it doesn't take much for them to stand out. Our ancient hunter-gatherer ancestors needed these large, pointed teeth to survive. But with the evolution of agriculture and industry, canine teeth have become gradually smaller—so much so that when they're abnormally large, they don't look right in a smile.

So, what can be done if your canines embarrassingly stand out from the rest? Here are some of the options to consider.

Reduce their size. If your canines are just a tad too long, it may be possible to remove some of the enamel layer in a procedure called contouring. Using this technique, we can reduce a tooth's overall size, which we then re-shape by bonding composite resin to the tooth. It's only a good option, though, if your canines have an ample and healthy layer of enamel.

Repair other teeth. The problem of prominent canine teeth may actually be caused by neighboring teeth. When the teeth next to the canines are crooked, the canines can appear more prominent. Alternatively, other teeth around the canines may be abnormally small. Braces or clear aligners can correct crooked incisors, and applying porcelain veneers to smaller teeth could help normalize their length.

Apply dental crowns. In some instances, we can reduce the canines in size and then bond porcelain crowns to them. This is the option that Dion ultimately chose. The natural teeth are still intact, but the crowning process transforms them into properly proportioned, life-like teeth. There is, however, one caveat: The alteration to these teeth will be permanent, so they will need a crown from then on.

Besides crowning her canine teeth, Dion also underwent other dental work to straighten and whiten her other teeth. As a result, this superstar performer now has a superstar smile to match and so can you if your teeth are less than perfect. These or other cosmetic enhancements can give you the look you truly desire. All it takes is an initial visit with us to start you on the road to a transformed smile.

If you would like more information about various cosmetic solutions for your smile, please contact us or schedule a consultation. To learn more, read the Dear Doctor magazine article “Porcelain Dental Crowns.”

By KATHLEEN M. GEIPE, DDS, PA
May 11, 2020
Category: Oral Health
Tags: crowns   dental crowns  

Discover the many smile advantages of getting a dental crown.

There are many reasons why our Salisbury, MD, dentist, Dr. Kathleen Geipe, might recommend getting a dental crown. This porcelain or ceramic tooth-shaped restoration is designed to protect a tooth from damage. Apart from being strong, durable, and long-lasting, this popular restoration also offers these benefits:

Strengthening a Weak Tooth

Everything from decay to a dental infection can damage the tooth so much that it can no longer stand on its own without some support. While minor decay can be treated with a dental filling, a tooth with more widespread decay might benefit more from a dental crown. The crown fully encapsulates the tooth, providing it with a stronger outer barrier to restore chewing, biting, and speaking.

Preserving Your Natural Tooth

The goal of our dentist, Dr. Geipe, and her team here in Salisbury, MD, is to preserve and protect your natural smile. To ensure the longevity of your smile this means providing restorations such as crowns that can stabilize and support what’s left of the natural tooth structure instead of having to pull the tooth and replace it. A crown provides a simple solution that can help you maintain your own natural smile for the rest of your life.

Improving Your Appearance

A dental crown can also offer cosmetic benefits, as well. After all, a crown is designed to look just like a natural tooth. This means that no one will be able to tell the difference between a real tooth and the tooth that has a crown. Therefore, if you are also dealing with a tooth that is malformed, misshapen, or severely discolored, a dental crown can help to brighten and reshape the tooth while hiding these imperfections.

Preventing Tooth Loss

A weak tooth will only get weaker over time if the problem isn’t treated. This is why it’s important to visit us right away if you are dealing with a cracked or broken tooth. A damaged tooth won’t be able to handle the same pressure and force from your jaws when chewing and biting, which can lead to further irreparable damage in the future. Instead of just waiting until you have to replace the tooth, getting a dental crown when you need it is a much easier solution.

If you are faced with a broken or damaged tooth that requires urgent care here in Salisbury, MD, our dentist is still providing emergency dental visits. Please call us at (410) 543-0599.

By Kathleen M. Geipe, DDS, PA
March 02, 2017
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: crowns   celebrity smiles  
DentalCrownsfortheKingofMagic

You might think David Copperfield leads a charmed life:  He can escape from ropes, chains, and prison cells, make a Learjet or a railroad car disappear, and even appear to fly above the stage. But the illustrious illusionist will be the first to admit that making all that magic takes a lot of hard work. And he recently told Dear Doctor magazine that his brilliant smile has benefitted from plenty of behind-the-scenes dental work as well.

“When I was a kid, I had every kind of [treatment]. I had braces, I had headgear, I had rubber bands, and a retainer afterward,” Copperfield said. And then, just when his orthodontic treatment was finally complete, disaster struck. “I was at a mall, running down this concrete alleyway, and there was a little ledge… and I went BOOM!”

Copperfield’s two front teeth were badly injured by the impact. “My front teeth became nice little points,” he said. Yet, although they had lost a great deal of their structure, his dentist was able to restore those damaged teeth in a very natural-looking way. What kind of “magic” did the dentist use?

In Copperfield’s case, the teeth were repaired using crown restorations. Crowns (also called caps) are suitable when a tooth has lost part of its visible structure, but still has healthy roots beneath the gum line. To perform a crown restoration, the first step is to make a precise model of your teeth, often called an impression. This allows a replacement for the visible part of the tooth to be fabricated, and ensures it will fit precisely into your smile. In its exact shape and shade, a well-made crown matches your natural teeth so well that it’s virtually impossible to tell them apart. Subsequently, the crown restoration is permanently attached to the damaged tooth.

There’s a blend of technology and art in making high quality crowns — just as there is in some stage-crafted illusions. But the difference is that the replacement tooth is not just an illusion: It looks, functions and “feels” like your natural teeth… and with proper care it can last for many years to come.  Besides crowns, there are several other types of tooth restorations that are suitable in different situations. We can recommend the right kind of “magic” for you.

If you would like more information about crowns, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Crowns & Bridgework” and “Porcelain Crowns & Veneers.”

By KATHLEEN M. GEIPE, DDS, PA
December 07, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: crowns   Bridges  

Are you concerned about cracks, missing teeth or fragile teeth? Crowns and bridges offer a simple way to solve your problem. Dr. Kathleen Geipe, your Salisbury, MD, dentist, explains how these versatile dental restorations can help your smile.

Crowns are an excellent solution to many dental problems in Salisbury

Crowns are hollow, custom-made porcelain shells that completely cover teeth. They may also be made of other strong materials, such as ceramic, resin, gold, nickel alloys or porcelain-fused-to-metal. Crowns are often used for:

  • Cracked Teeth: Cracks, even small ones, weaken the structural integrity of teeth. When you have a crack, it's only a matter of time until the tooth will break if you don't do something to stabilize it. Crowns protect and strengthen cracked teeth and prevent them from fracturing.
  • Discolored Teeth: One or two discolored teeth can make you feel a little self-conscious about your smile. Since crowns cover your teeth completely, they're a good option if a tooth has been discolored because of a large filling or due to medication side effects.
  • Unattractive Teeth: Just one oddly shaped tooth can affect the symmetry of your smile. Whether your tooth is pointed, twisted or pitted, you'll benefit from a dental crown.
  • Short Teeth: Your bite may suffer if one tooth is shorter than the others. Adding a crown to the tooth lengthens it and makes chewing easier.
  • Teeth Weakened by Dental Treatments: Root canals, large fillings and other dental treatments restore teeth, but also tend to make them weaker. Crowns prevent these fragile teeth from cracking or breaking.
  • Broken Teeth: Broken teeth can cut your mouth or tongue, make chewing more difficult and altering your appearance. Crowns restore the full width and height of broken teeth.

Bridges replace missing teeth

Would you like to do something about a missing tooth? Bridges, which consist of one or more artificial teeth anchored by crowns on either side, restore your appearance and your smile. They not only replace your missing tooth, but also prevent nearby teeth from drifting.

Could you benefit from crowns and bridges? Call Dr. Geipe, your Salisbury, MD, dentist, at (410) 543-0599 to schedule an appointment to learn more about your options.