Porcelain: Time Tested Tech for Your Teeth
One of the things that we’re most proud of here at Dores Dental is that we use advanced, cutting edge technology to help our patients get the best possible treatment with the greatest level of comfort. This includes the use of gentle lasers and not drills; using advanced digital imaging to get a better, more detailed view of your teeth (and any problems you might have).
However, one of the best (and most popular) technologies that we use in our office (located in Longmeadow, MA) is 2,000 years old! We’re talking about porcelain; a ceramic that we use in dental restorations such as veneers and CEREC Same-Day Crowns. Dental technology has made many advances in recent years, but so far, nothing beats porcelain for its durability, ease of maintenance, and aesthetic value. Nothing, except of course healthy, natural teeth, but we can’t make those(not yet, anyway).
Why Is Porcelain Such A Big Part of Modern Dentistry?
Porcelain has been around for 2,000 years. It was originally invented in China (which is why we call porcelain dinnerware “China”), and it made its way into Europe in the 16th century; porcelain got its name from the Italian word porcellana, a type of very translucent seashell.
Despite the age of the technology, porcelain has a lot going for it that other materials simply don’t have:
- Porcelain is a biocompatible material. This means it doesn’t cause an allergic reaction like metals can (in some patients).
- Porcelain is easy to maintain. It is even stain resistant!
- Porcelain looks virtually the same as your natural teeth. Your teeth’s appearance is determined by how light reflects or is absorbed by the surface of your teeth. Porcelain and your natural teeth interact with light in almost exactly the same way; they are similar in terms of translucence, as well. This means that a porcelain dental restoration is much more discrete than other alternatives. Only you will know you have a dental restoration in place!
- Porcelain is extremely strong and durable. Porcelain is an ideal material to use in your mouth, which is a pretty challenging environment! Your mouth is very wet; porcelain doesn’t dissolve in water.Porcelain can handle even very strong impacts and can grind and crush even the very toughest foods you can eat. This is due to porcelain’s incredible degree of hardness. Hardness is measured on the Mohs Scale. For comparison, a diamond has the highest rating of 10. Porcelain (which is a type of ceramic) has a rating of 7.
How Does Dores Dental Use Porcelain?
Dores Dental uses porcelain in veneers and crowns.
Veneers are a dental restoration that cosmetically enhances the appearance of your teeth. Veneers are used to help patients with teeth that are showing signs of extreme wear, have damage due to injury or disease (although we often see a lot of it that is caused by bruxism, or teeth-grinding, as well), or have stubborn stains that can’t be sufficiently removed with teeth whitening or bleaching treatments, such as those stains caused by certain medications such as the commonly prescribed antibiotic known as tetracycline.
Veneers literally cover up these flaws; your dentist will clean and prepare the surface of your teeth for placement, which may involve the removal of a small and non-harmful quantity of your enamel. A powerful bonding agent is applied, and the veneers (which are custom fabricated specifically for your teeth) are placed on the surface of the teeth. Porcelain veneers last a great deal longer than veneers made of other materials (such as composite resin or plastic), and much, much longer than dental bonding. Because porcelain is so close in appearance to your natural teeth, porcelain veneers can provide you with a smile that appears healthy, but most importantly, natural.
Porcelain Crowns (in one day!)
Crowns are used to strengthen and protect teeth that are severely damaged, or teeth that have undergone a root canal treatment. One of the big problems with crowns in general is that they take far too long to fabricate. It’s a problem for two reasons:
One, getting a crown usually means multiple appointments with long stretches of timer in between, whis very inconvenient for you, the patient. You have to come in once for your procedure (like a root canal) and to have an impression made so that your custom crown can be made (usually in a specialized lab that serves many dental practices). Then you’ll need a second appointment to have your crown placed.
The second reason is more serious: between those two appointments, you wait weeks with a temporary crown. Temporary crowns can break very easily, and if this happens, it puts you at extreme risk for a tooth infection (or possibly worse).
At Dores Dental, we offer porcelain crowns that look better and are easier to maintain than crowns made of other materials, such as metal. Even better, we can make our porcelain crowns in our own practice, and we can make them within a single appointment instead of forcing you to wait weeks and risk infection.
This is possible because we offer CEREC Same-Day Porcelain Crowns. CEREC combines the superior performance of porcelain, the accuracy of digital imaging, and the speed of automatic manufacturing to produce crowns much faster than ever before. CEREC crowns are also much more accurate in their design; so accurate in fact that a CEREC crown can repair a tooth that would have to be extracted (if traditional crown methods are used).
Add a Touch of Class to Your Smile With Porcelain Dental Restorations at Dores Dental!
If you need a dental restoration, such as veneers to improve the appearance of your teeth or a crown to protect a damaged tooth and improve your oral health, porcelain is the best way to go! Dores Dental makes it easy with a caring staff, advanced technology like CEREC, and years of experience providing advanced general and cosmetic dentistry for the whole family.
Call us today for an appointment! You can reach our front desk at 413-241-3995, or click here to use our handy online appointment form to book your visit right now!