Cosmetic Dentistry Blog Cosmetic and General Dentistry Questions Answered

December 9, 2016

Should my dentist grind on my porcelain crowns?


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Dr. Hall,
Earlier this year I got porcelain crowns on my 2 front teeth. One came loose and fell off. I had it “cemented” back on at the dentist & she ground down the porcelain to correct the bite after it was placed. Less than a week later the back side of my crown broke off where the bite adjustment had been made. What do you suggest? Should porcelain crowns ever be ground on or does this weaken them?
– Cheri from Minnesota

Cheri,
When you get a new porcelain crown, it isn’t uncommon for the dentist to have to adjust the crown to your bite, which is done by grinding on it some.
Having said that, something isn’t right about your experience here. Here are the three things that trouble me:

• First of all, one of the crowns came loose. This isn’t something that should be happening to a permanently cemented crown. Something wasn’t done right for a new crown to be falling off that soon.
• Second, the bite should have been adjusted when the crown was first placed. This is strange that the bite has to be adjusted after it is recemented. Something went wrong in the recementation process. The recemented crown must not have gotten back on straight for it to require new adjustments.
• And third, of course, you had the back of the crown break off. This wouldn’t happen unless the porcelain was ground so much as to be dangerously thin.

The fix is to have this crown replaced. But I would go somewhere else for this. I have real concerns about your current dentist being able to get this right. Oh, and she should compensate you for having to do this.

– Dr. Hall

For information on why crowns fall off, please see my earlier post, “The main reason your crown probably fell off.”

Do you have a comment or a question or anything else to add? We’d love to hear from you. Enter your comment below.

Click here to ask Dr. Hall a question of your own.

About David A. Hall

Dr. David Hall was one of the first 40 accredited cosmetic dentists in the world. He practiced cosmetic dentistry in Iowa, and in 1990 earned his accreditation with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. He is now president of Infinity Dental Web, a company in Mesa, Arizona that does complete Internet marketing for dentists.

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