Advice over matching of new and old crowns

Q. I recently broke a piece off a back tooth on which I had root canal treatment a few years ago. Both of my front teeth are crowned and I was also experiencing a little “vibration” in one of them. On visiting my dentist yesterday and after taking x-rays, she says the root canal treatment I had years ago was “incomplete” (it was done at the same practice but by my previous dentist who has now left) but there is no decay so recommends just a crown as there is not enough tooth left to fill. As for the front crown I have an infection for which she is recommending root canal treatment and a new crown. She has quoted me £450 per crown plus £360 for the root canal treatment Initally I thought this sounded very expensive but after a bit of research have accepted these are probably the right prices – however my main concern is that the new crown will match the one next to it? I should be grateful for your opinion on the treatment recommended and the price – and is there a chance they won`t match? Thanks you for your time.

A. To answer your last point first – to match a new crown to adjacent old crowns or teeth is extremely hard to do.  There is a chance of an incorrect colour match.  Personally I do such treatment and usually manage to get a great result but this is by colour correcting the crown at the time of fit using a porcelain furnace in my surgery.  This is very unusual in dentistry and despite all these efforts the colour match may not be “perfect”.  As far as price goes the fees you have been quoted are very reasonable.  In fact possibly to low if you are looking for a perfect match as the dentist is likely to have to make adjustments to the color over several visits.

dr julian caplan

Dr Julian Caplan – Director on the board of the BACD

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