Temporary Teeth FAQ Guide
1. What are temporary teeth?
A temporary tooth is silimar to a permanent crwon in apprearance, but it is made of softer material, usually PMMA. A temporary tooth is custom-made that fits in your mouth (upper jaw) or lower jaw. When it is put in your mouth, it will give you the feeling of a smile on your face, even if you lose a tooth from an injury, a tooth extraction, or a cavity.
You can get temporary teeth through your dentists, but very often through dental labs, because dental labs make temporary teeth that are more aesthetic and more accurate. Start by making an impression on your mouth with a soft material. The impression is then sent to a dental lab, where it is used to create a custom temporary tooth to fit your mouth and fill any gaps in your teeth with a denture. Usually, temporary teeth are milled out of PMMA blocks.
The function of a temporary crown is to protect the tooth, prevent tooth displacement, provide cosmetics, shape the gum tissue, and prevent sensitivity. Using them, you can restore the shape, size, appearance, and strength of damaged teeth.
2. Why do patients need temporary teeth?
After the dentist prepares the teeth, the patient needs to wait for their teeth to be restored. During long waits, dentists may request temporary teeth for their patients. Your temporary teeth may be in 2 to 3 weeks or more. The length of time you have this temporary tooth depends on the level of dental treatment you need. For example, implants can take weeks to months for the bone to heal before permanent teeth can be placed on them.
3. What is the function of temporary teeth?
Temporary teeth are used when natural teeth require traditional permanent teeth. Because it takes a few weeks for a permanent tooth to be done as you want, your dentist will place a temporary tooth before the permanent tooth is ready.
Temporary teeth are used to:
- Ensure that the natural tooth (or implant site) and gums are protected
- Ensure that you can smile normally without a gap
- Maintain the proper spacing between your teeth
- Help the dentist assess how the tooth will function
- Maintain the dental aesthetic
Provisional restorations offer dental aesthetic purposes, especially for anterior teeth. The patient can evaluate the aesthetics of the temporary crown if it will be changed in the definitive restoration.
- Maintain the tooth’s function
Over-eruption of opposing teeth and drifting of adjacent teeth can be prevented by providing provisional restoration. It is also possible to restore masticatory function for posterior teeth.
- Confirm that the tooth preparation is sufficient
Any undercuts present will be removed and sufficient tooth preparation will be made to accommodate the definitive restoration. A temporary crown can be relined or remade if deficiencies are found in the tooth prep.
- Prevent dentine hypersensitivity
To prevent any movement of dentinal fluid, temporary crowns can be used to cover exposed dentinal tubules in vital teeth
In order to prevent pulpal inflammation, temporary crowns prevent bacteria from entering the root canal fillings and maintain a good coronal seal.
A temporary tooth may cover an implant or a tooth with a root canal, or a tooth that’s been repaired. It can be used for a single tooth or as a bridge over more than one implant. Some dental offices may have the computer capability and equipment to make a tooth in one day, but in most cases, it will take at least a week or two to create a permanent tooth.
4. When do you need a temporary tooth?
Temporary teeth are designed to protect and repair teeth if they have any form of damage. There may be several reasons for needing temporary teeth.
- Fragile teeth may need protection from decay or breakage.
- Broken or worn teeth may need to be replaced.
- If there are not many teeth to cover or protect, you may need a filling.
- You may need to use it to fix the bridge. When you have dentures or dentures, bridges are used to fill the gaps between your teeth. You may also need a crown to cover the implant. Missing teeth can be replaced with dental implants.
Temporary teeth can cover unsightly teeth. For example, you may need to cover discolored teeth. You may need a temporary tooth to cover a fragile or broken tooth that has had root canal treatment. It can take 2 to 3 weeks to make a permanent tooth in the lab, as permanent teeth are custom-made to fit your mouth. Your dentist may recommend that you use a temporary tooth during this time.
5. Is it worth placing a temporary tooth?
Whether a temporary tooth is worth the money depends on how much you spend. How much you’ll spend, in turn, depends on whether you have dental insurance and whether the procedure is medically necessary.
If this temporary tooth is medically necessary, dental insurance will usually cover it, usually 50%. Medically speaking, it is necessary to choose a temporary tooth for reasons including:
- Repair cracked or severely damaged teeth
- After root canal treatment, strengthen the tooth structure
- Fill and stabilize large cavities in teeth
- Replace missing teeth with stakes or bridges
For some wider or deeper cavities, you can choose a large filling or a temporary filling. Temporary teeth are more expensive, but they also provide more protection and strengthen the teeth. If you don’t have this temporary tooth, you may eventually need to have it removed.
Sometimes people want temporary teeth to improve the appearance of their stained, lost, worn, or uneven teeth. In this case, the insurance company will consider temporary cosmetic dentistry and will not cover them. You may want to consider a cheaper option like veneers or whitening treatments.
6. What are the options for temporary teeth?
When you’re considering temporary solutions to cover or protect damaged or missing teeth, there are several options for you to consider. Here are 3 common questions:
1) Temporary dental implants
In many cases, your dentist may provide you with temporary dental implants between your visit to the dentist and your permanent implant from the lab. However, there are also over-the-counter products that can help you deal with dental emergencies.
For example, pharmacies and large retailers sell many emergency dental replacement kits. These kits contain thermoplastic beads that can be placed in hot water until they are soft and malleable. At that point, you can use your fingers to shape the beads into a firm, tooth-shaped bump that can fill in your missing teeth. The nature of the temporary block will allow you to adjust it until it “locks” with the other teeth.
While this is one of the cheapest options, you can easily lose the temporary implant during normal meals, which can be a major drawback.
2) Flipper’s teeth
A flipper is basically a removable retainer that fits the contours of your upper jaw or jaw. One or more dentures are attached to this retainer to fill in the gaps left by the missing teeth. Another way to understand flippers is a temporary partial denture that gives the impression of a full smile.
You can get a finned tooth through a dentist. The process of formation is relatively straightforward. First, the dentist makes an impression on your mouth with a soft, clay-like material. These impressions are sent to the dental lab, which then uses them to create personalized fin-like teeth that fit the contours of your unique mouth and then fill any voids with acrylic teeth.
Flipper’s teeth are generally a more comfortable and longer-lasting option than OTC tools, featuring temporary teeth. They are also suitable for eating many types of food. Having said that, they are still fragile and break easily.
3) Snap-on veneers
Snap-on veneers are also known as “snap-on teeth,” “snap-on smiles,” or “clip-on veneers.” This option is very similar to a flipper tooth in that it provides the appearance of a complete smile with no spaces from missing/damaged teeth. Like flipper teeth, snap-on veneers are made by taking an impression of your teeth and are usually made of acrylic or resin.
Snap-on veneers are different from flipper teeth in that they fully cover your permanent teeth, rather than partially covering them like flipper teeth. Due to this, snap-on veneers may make your teeth appear bigger than usual. When it comes to convenience, though, snap-on teeth are hard to beat: you can put them on and take them off whenever you like.
7. What are temporary teeth made of?
Because temporary teeth are only needed for short-term use, they are made differently than permanent crowns. Temporary crowns are usually made of acrylic or metal materials. They can also be installed on the gums using temporary dental cement (also known as crown cement or crown cement).
Temporary teeth are not custom-made, so your doctor may add a filling to improve the fit.
8. What are the pros and cons of using temporary teeth?
Temporary teeth have several advantages that make them an attractive denture option.
- Affordability. They are less expensive than most other types of partial dentures.
- Natural looks. They look relatively natural.
- Quick preparation. Once your dentist has examined your mouth, you won’t have to wait long to find your temporary teeth.
- Easy to wear. All you have to do is put this temporary tooth in your mouth.
- Stabilize existing teeth. This makes them less likely to move.
While there are many benefits to using a temporary tooth to fill the gap in your smile, there are also some downsides.
- Durability. Compared to other dentures, their material is cheaper, more durable, and more prone to breakage. If your temporary teeth are broken, you will need to repair or replace them.
- Discomfort. Your temporary tooth can feel uncomfortable in your mouth, especially when you use it for the first time. Talking and eating can feel unnatural as a result. If your temporary teeth are painful, make an appointment with your dentist to have them take a look.
- Potential allergy. You may be allergic to the materials used to make temporary teeth. Your dentist should be aware of your allergy history.
- Maintain. If you don’t clean your temporary teeth properly, you run the risk of developing gum disease (gingivitis) and tooth decay.
- There is a risk of gum recession. Temporary teeth cover the gums, preventing or slowing the flow of saliva in the area. Your saliva helps keep your gums clean, thereby preventing gum recession.
- May relax over time. Temporary teeth are used to hold your existing teeth in place, but regular use can cause this fixation to loosen. You may need to have your dentist adjust your temporary teeth to get them back in place.
9. How many procedures are there for placing temporary teeth?
The process of temporary teeth includes preparing the teeth, making restorations, and placing the teeth. The whole process is divided into two appointments. Find out what to expect during each appointment.
1) The first appointment
The dentist prepares the teeth at the first appointment. Before a crown can be installed, the tooth must be shaped, including the removal of damaged areas and some healthy tooth structure. The amount of structure removed depends on the position of the tooth and the material used for the crown. Dentists will extract up to 75% of teeth and usually at least 60% or more. If there is not enough healthy tooth structure to support the crown, the dentist will fill the tooth with a filling. The dentist then sends the impression of the tooth to the dental laboratory for a custom restoration. The dentist places a temporary crown in place to protect the tooth. Your dentist will provide guidance on the care of temporary crowns. The first appointment may take 90 minutes. However, many patients have surgery within an hour. The length of time depends on the patient’s needs. For example, those who need teeth repaired can stay for more than an hour.
2)The second appointment
It takes about two weeks for the dental lab to make the crown and then send the restored crown back to the dental office. The patient returns to the office when the crown is ready. The dentist first removes the temporary crown and removes the cement from the tooth. The dentist then assesses the fit of the crown. It is placed on the tooth and the dentist uses a tool to check for fit. Your dentist may also use floss between the crown and other teeth to make sure the crown matches the other teeth. If the crown does not fit, the dentist will use a drill to fix it. The fit will be checked again. This process repeats until the crown fits. The dentist then uses dental cement to attach the crown to the tooth. This usually takes 20 minutes to complete. However, if the dentist needs to make some changes to achieve the right result, it may take 30 minutes or more.
10. How long can a temporary tooth last?
Your temporary teeth may be in 2 to 3 weeks or more. The length of time you have this temporary tooth depends on the level of dental treatment you need. For example, implants can take weeks to months for the bone to heal before permanent teeth can be placed on them.
11. How much does a temporary tooth usually cost?
The cost of a temporary tooth largely depends on its material. Most temporary teeth are made up of:
- Porcelain: Generally speaking, temporary teeth made from tooth-colored porcelain are the most natural choice—and one of the most expensive. Porcelain crowns are used almost exclusively on front teeth. According to Authority Dental, such teeth can cost between $1,000 and $2,500, with an average price of $1,300.
- Like porcelain, zirconia is a ceramic material. It is stronger than other ceramics, lasts longer, and wears less to the enamel. Because of the strength of zirconia, it is often used for temporary teeth over molars. Its price is roughly comparable to that of porcelain.
- Metal: The cost of metal teeth depends in part on the alloy used. Of course, gold alloy crowns cost more than those made from base metal alloys like nickel-chromium, cobalt-chromium, or nickel-titanium. Metal crowns are usually installed on molars. Authority Dental believes a metal crown can cost between $900 and $2,500, with an average price of around $1,300.
- Porcelain is fused to metal. If you want a strong, natural-looking tooth, your dentist may recommend a crown made of metal-to-porcelain. This tooth can be installed anywhere in the mouth. The Dental Board reports that they cost between $800 and $2,400, with an average price of $1,100.
12. What to do if your temporary tooth falls out？
If your temporary crown falls out, see your dentist as soon as possible. Meanwhile, if you have a crown, rinse it gently with warm water to check for any damage. Please put it in a small plastic container or bag to prevent contamination and damage.
If your crown falls and you lose it, schedule an appointment to put a new crown on. It is very important not to leave a space in place of the temporary crown! Temporary crowns serve several functions, such as making sure your teeth are intact and protecting the area below from infection. If the crown falls out, you may notice that your bite may be abnormal or unbalanced.
After the lower tooth area is exposed due to the loss of the crown, you may notice cement underneath. This cement may have sharp or abrasive edges and it is crucial to protect this area where the temporary crown does not exist now. Apply a small amount of orthodontic wax around your teeth – you can get them at your local pharmacy.
You must rinse your mouth frequently and follow your dentist’s oral hygiene advice until you can re-stick your crown. This means keeping exposed areas clean and avoiding food particles and other debris that can lead to infection and make the situation worse.
If you experience pain, follow the directions above and take an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as ibuprofen (Ave, Ibuprofen), to help reduce pain and reduce swelling and inflammation.
13. How to protect your temporary teeth？
Temporary teeth are very fragile, to extend the life of your temporary teeth, follow the procedure below.
Considering the damage caused by brittle and sticky foods, it is best for dental patients to eat soft foods while their temporary teeth are still in place. That means yogurt, mashed potatoes, oatmeal, applesauce, bananas, soups, smoothies, and more. If the food doesn’t take a lot of effort to eat, it’s for you.
- Avoid high and low temperatures
Hot and cold temperatures can cause tooth sensitivity. When you have temporary teeth, try to stick to warm or room temperature foods and drinks.
- Use the other side of your mouth to chew
As an extra precaution, we advise patients to try chewing from the other side of the mouth where the teeth are. This is especially helpful in reducing discomfort and keeping the temporary teeth in place for the first few days.
- Oral Hygiene with Temporary Teeth
It’s important for patients to brush their teeth at least three times a day and floss at least once a day when a temporary tooth in is place. It is ideal to brush and floss after every meal. Using an antibacterial mouthwash a few times a day is also a good idea. This all helps reduce the risk of infection and inflammation when the temporary tooth is in place.
14. How to keep temporary teeth clean?
Food particles and plaque can form on temporary teeth, just like permanent teeth, and leave stains behind. It is recommended to brush your teeth once a day and soak them overnight. Let’s take a look at how to clean your temporary dentures:
Put them on a towel or basin half full of water so they don’t break when dropped.
- Use a soft-bristled toothbrush, non-abrasive denture cleaner, and water.
Be aware that toothpaste can scratch your dentures, so don’t use it to clean your dentures. Avoid hot water and solutions containing bleach, as they can damage dentures.
Ask your dentist how to soak your dentures overnight. Always wash your dentures thoroughly before putting them back in your mouth. You should also practice good oral hygiene by cleaning your mouth, tongue, and gums in the morning before inserting your dentures so your smile will look fresh and ready for the day ahead.
15. Can you eat with a temporary tooth?
Eating can be difficult if one or more teeth are missing. When you use a temporary tooth, not only will you be able to eat, you may be able to chew better than you would without it.
However, be careful when eating temporary teeth, as they are made of a very light material and can break easily.
16. What if your temporary tooth comes loose?
If your temporary teeth fall out, your best bet is to call your dentist to make an appointment to have your temporary teeth adjusted. Your dentist will likely replace it with another temporary tooth.
It’s important not to leave the space in your mouth empty, as the teeth or the gums under them may become damaged or infected. Also, it could rip off what you bit off, creating problems for permanent repairs.
17. Can temporary teeth be brushed or flossed?
Yes. You can brush and floss your teeth. The caveat is that they are not as durable as permanent ones, so careful brushing and flossing are required. It can easily come off or come loose if you don’t pay attention to your brushing technique.
Don’t use an electric toothbrush on temporary crowns; instead, brush carefully with a regular toothbrush. You can use a children’s toothbrush because it contains very soft bristles that are friendly to your temporary crown.
Flossing requires more attention, and you need to be very careful to remove the floss from the temporary crown. As you floss, slowly and carefully pull the floss aside to slide it out. Do not pull against the crown, as it can irritate the already sensitive areas around the teeth and gums.
Experts recommend flossing twice a day.
Due to the cost of temporary teeth, these smart care tips will guide you in caring for your temporary teeth until your new, permanent teeth. By following these tips, you should have no problem reaching your goal of a brand new smile.