Lexington Metal-free Dentist
Traditionally, a metal framework was necessary to provide adequate strength for dental crowns and bridges. But not any more. With modern advances in bonding materials and technologies, Dr. Jenny has options.
Metal allergies aren’t that uncommon. Are you a woman who has to wear hypo-allergenic earrings? You are probably allergic to nickel. About 10% of the population are allergic to nickel, and nickel is often used in porcelain-fused-to-metal restorations as well as in partial denture frameworks. Beryllium and cobalt are other metals used in dental alloys that provoke sensitivities in some people. Knowing these things, some patients feel safest avoiding any metal at all in dental restorations.
The good news is that newer ceramic technologies have resulted in extremely strong metal-free dental materials. Porcelain crowns and zirconia bridges have proven to be extremely durable, even for back teeth. And besides avoiding metal sensitivities, these restorations are very natural-looking because they eliminate the need for using opaquers to block out the metal.
All-Porcelain Crowns vs Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal
Historically, porcelain was baked into a metal foundation so the crown was strong enough. This is called a porcelain-fused-to-metal crown. Although porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns are functional, they present some esthetic concerns. When metal is used in the crown, it is only a matter of time before a dark line will appear at the gumline. As the gums recede, the dark line becomes more prominent. Metal also prevents light from reflecting naturally which makes the tooth look fake and opaque in appearance.
Dr. Jenny has mastered the newer bonding technologies and techniques required to place all-porcelain crowns. Porcelain is a beautiful restoration material and will blend into your smile perfectly.
You can see these two types of crowns pictured in a side-by-side comparison. This patient elected to have her porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns replaced with all-porcelain, metal-free crowns. On the left, you can see the porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns. Notice the thin black line near the gumline, as well as the fake-looking appearance of the front teeth. The all-porcelain crowns, shown in the after picture on the left, are lifelike and natural-looking.
At most practices, a dental crown requires two separate appointments. The tooth is prepared and an impression is taken at the first appointment. Then, a temporary crown is made for you to wear until the permanent one is ready. When the permanent crown returns from the lab, sometimes weeks later, you return for another appointment where the crown is seated and placed.
At Hamburg Impressions, our laboratory is in-house. This means your crown can be created using CAD/CAM computer technology, all in the same day. The preparation, fabrication, and final fitting can be done at the same appointment. You don’t have to fool around with an uncomfortable temporary crown. To learn more about same-day crowns, please visit our CEREC crowns page.
Zirconia Bridges Are Metal-Free
Dr. Jenny prefers zicronia bridges because they are exceptionally strong and provide a natural, translucent appearance. With zironica bridges, there is no dark line present. They also work well for patients with metal sensitivities or allergies because they are bio-compatible. Please visit our dental bridges page to learn more about this option to replace one or more missing teeth.
If metal-free dentistry is important to you or if you have questions, please contact us at 855-854-4487 for more information.