How A Dental Laboratory Works With Your Dentist To Create A Crown, Bridge, Or Dentures

Getting a crown, implant, bridge, or dentures is usually a multi-step process because the artificial teeth have to be made in a dental laboratory, and that takes time. It could take a few weeks to get your dentures or crown back from the dental lab so your dentist can complete your dental work. Here's a look at the process.

The Dentist Makes Impressions Of Your Teeth 

The first step is when your dentist makes impressions of your teeth. This is done by having you bite into dental putty or by a computerized scan. This is necessary when a dental lab makes anything that will fit in your mouth so the fit will be precise.

Making impressions doesn't hurt and it doesn't take too long. Once the dentist is finished, they send the impressions to a dental laboratory along with other instructions such as the exact shade of white needed.

The Dental Laboratory Forms The Tooth

The dental lab then uses the information to make a mold of your mouth so they can see how the crown needs to fit in with your other teeth. They can then make another mold where the crown will fit. They'll use this mold to fill with materials used to make the crown. Melted materials are poured into the crown and then baked so the artificial tooth is hard and durable. After that, layers may be added to replicate the look of natural enamel and to get the shade of white just right.

The Dentist Makes The Finishing Touches

The dentist places the crown or bridge in your mouth and tests it for imperfections. They may need to file parts of it down to keep the crown from rubbing your gums.

In the case of dentures, the dentist can make minor adjustments right away and again after you've worn the dentures for a while and have a chance to notice problem areas. The final step with a crown is to cement it in place so the crown makes a permanent bond with your tooth.

Same-Day Crowns Might Work In Some Cases

If your dental clinic has the equipment that's needed, they can make crowns the same day. However, the material the crown can be made from is limited to ceramic. The dentist takes computerized impressions of your teeth and a computer uses them to operate a machine that makes the crown out of a block of ceramic.

You'll get your crown quicker, but a same-day crown may not always be suitable. If you want gold or porcelain, you need a crown made in a traditional dental laboratory. If you need a crown for a visible front tooth or molar, your dentist may recommend a lab-made crown. Your dentist will help you decide when a tooth is a good match for a same-day crown and when it's best to have your crown made at a dental lab.