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Porcelain Crowns

Crowns, also known as caps, fit over an entire tooth to restore (or improve) its original appearance. When a filling won't help strengthen a tooth enough, or when a cavity is too large for a filling to be useful, our prosthodontist Dr. Cao may recommend a crown for you.

Metal-free porcelain crowns are becoming more and more widely used by experienced dentists because they work well and patients are usually highly satisfied with them.

Porcelain crowns feel more comfortable and natural in your mouth, are the easiest to match to the color of your natural teeth, and are easier to keep clean than other types of crowns. Because porcelain crowns have a tighter seal around the tooth than other types of crowns, plaque and bacteria are less likely to become trapped along their edges. That means they are also less likely to irritate the gums or foster gum disease.

You'll also appreciate the fact that porcelain crowns require less drilling and have better strength and durability. They're less likely to chip, and less likely to cause wear on the surfaces of adjoining teeth.


What Should I Expect When I Have a Crown Placed?

As a rule, you'll come in for two appointments. First, we'll take a mold of the tooth that will get the crown. We'll use this mold to make a temporary crown to protect your tooth between your first and second appointments. We'll administer your choice of anesthetic and then remove any decay and reshape your tooth, if necessary. We'll make a second, very precise impression of your tooth to send to the lab. Dr. Cao will put your temporary protective crown in place and then send detailed instructions to the lab so that they can use the mold to create a unique, custom-designed tooth that will fit you perfectly.

During the second appointment, we'll remove your temporary crown and clean and inspect your tooth to make sure your permanent crown will fit perfectly -- we'll even take an X-ray to ensure that your fit is perfect. Once you approve the color match of your crown to the rest of your teeth, we will cement your crown to your tooth permanently.

As long as you take good care of your teeth, your crown can last for a decade or more. 


When a tooth can't be saved, dentures are often the best option for keeping a friendly and natural smile. We use the latest techniques to make sure your dentures are comfortable and suit the structure of your mouth and the natural lines of your face.

Properly fitted dentures shouldn't slip too much or irritate your mouth. If you've been relying heavily on denture adhesives to keep your dentures in place, come see Dr. Cao for a consultation.

We offer several different kinds of dentures to serve a variety of needs.

Conventional Dentures: These are full dentures that Dr. Cao will design for long-term use. Dr. Cao will carefully adjust your dentures to make sure that they feel good and fit perfectly. You'll be able to speak, eat, and laugh with assurance, knowing that your dentures will stay in place and look natural.

Over Dentures: If you've had implants put in or had teeth reshaped, we can craft over dentures to fit on top of them. They'll help preserve the overall look of your smile.

Partial Dentures: Were you aware that if you have missing teeth, your other teeth can shift out of alignment? Partial dentures are simple, strong appliances that attach to your natural teeth. They'll help keep the lines of your smile where they should be, and usually aren't even noticeable to someone else.

Getting Used to New Dentures

A new set of dentures always requires an adjustment period. You should get used to having them in within a week or two. It will help if you wear your dentures as much as possible and stick to soft foods at first. You can become more comfortable speaking in your new dentures by practicing reading out loud.

It's not unusual to develop sore spots as you're getting used to new dentures. Dr. Cao will help by scheduling follow-up appointments to check your fit and, if necessary, make adjustments to help you feel more comfortable.

Caring for Your Dentures

You will need to take your dentures out at night to let your gums rest. To keep them clean, brush them gently with a normal toothbrush -- soft bristles are best. (You'll also want to brush your gums with a soft-bristle toothbrush, morning and evening, to make sure plaque doesn't build up.) As a rule, you should let full dentures soak overnight in denture cleaner. However, if you have partial dentures with metal clasps or framework, you should let them dry overnight. Be sure to rinse them before you put them back on in the morning.

Remember that it takes real training and experience to fit and adjust your dental appliance properly -- you should never try to force your dentures, or to adjust the clasps yourself. If a clasp or a tooth breaks, give Dr. Cao a call. We'll either be able to arrange for in-office repairs or have a new set sent from the laboratory within a few days.

Regular Checkups are Key

Even as an adult, the bones and gums of your mouth keep changing. Dentures that fit perfectly at first may be loose or less comfortable after a few years. Regular adjustments and refittings can help keep your smile looking and feeling its best.