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Did You Know That Your New Crown Could Give You Gum Disease for Life?

Submitted by Michael R. Cortese, D.M.D. on Tue 07/11/2017 - 09:00

If you have been told you need a dental crown, Princeton, NJ prosthodontist Dr. Michael Cortese believes you should understand all of the benefits and potential risks. Having the right information about this popular dental restoration can help you make an educated decision about your care.

Something you should consider before having a dental crown placed is that the restoration designed to save your tooth could potentially give you gum disease.

How Does a Crown Lead to Gum Disease?

An open margin is a space or a gap between the natural tooth and the dental restoration. If there are open margins around a crown, bacteria can get into the space and cause decay around and under the restoration. Bacteria can also irritate and infect the gum tissue, leading to gum disease.

In its early stages, gum disease causes swollen, bleeding gums and tooth pain. As it progresses, it can cause the gums to recede. Empty spaces may form beneath the teeth and the edges of the dental crowns may start to show.

In its most advanced form, gum disease destroys the structures and bone supporting the teeth. If left untreated, gum disease can cause the natural teeth to loosen and fall out or need extraction.

Gum disease is also a threat to overall health. Studies show a link between gum disease and dementia/Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease, diabetes, stroke, pregnancy complications, bone problems and respiratory infections. Avoiding gum disease is good for oral health and overall health.

Reduce Your Risk of Developing Gum Disease from Crowns

There are steps that you can take to reduce your risk of gum disease:

Keep yourself safe by selecting the right dental specialist. After dental school, prosthodontists complete three more years of university and hospital post-doctoral training to specialize in all oral restorations, especially crowns, bridges, dentures and implants. Prosthodontists are very aware of open margins around dental restorations, and pay close attention to detail as they work. They meticulously seal restorations around the tooth structure to avoid open margins. Prosthodontists can also identify and fix open margins on crowns you may already have to prevent future problems.

Practice great oral hygiene. Excellent brushing and flossing technique is critical to removing food particles, bacteria and plaque from the nooks and crannies between the teeth (or crowns) and the gum line, where they like to hide. Your prosthodontist may also recommend a special mouthwash or a tool like a water flosser for extra protection against plaque and gum disease.

Contact Dr. Michael Cortese

For more information about preventing or treating gum disease, Princeton prosthodontist Michael Cortese welcomes you to contact our practice today.