A Sore Thumb

Mimicking Nature - A very old Crown

A Sore Thumb

Problem: the obvious aesthetic issues aside, a very old crown on an older patient presented to us, with a number of associated issues (including notable tooth wear). He was adamant that he did not wish for anything other than for his tooth to look more like one his own. Over the years, his own teeth changed in appearance under the influence of acid damage as well as normal wear and tear of ageing. However the crown which once would have matched his more youthful teeth was now rather prominent for all the wrong reasons. Such a complex colour palette would not be easy to reproduce.

Solution: in the hands of an artisan, our master ceramist was able to incorporate the many features of his worn teeth including the strong amber and brown hues of his exposed dentine as well as crack lines and the translucent thinning enamel.

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Discussion Points: such a case highlights the potential for artistic expression – when required, in order to mimic nature, and to allow a prosthetic tooth to slip back into its natural surroundings. Where the patient had worn concavities at the necks of his own teeth, we chose not to reproduce this entirely due to the propensity for additional debris collection, thus risking his oral hygiene and potential damage to his gum health. However clever use of colour and layering techniques overcomes this regardless with a crown that now looks a part of the family once more.