Posts for: March, 2018

By Richard H. Lestz DDS, PC
March 16, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: crowns  

All crowns are designed to restore functionality to a damaged tooth. But crowns can differ from one another in their appearance, in the material they’re made from, and how they blend with other teeth.

A crown is a metal or porcelain artifice that’s bonded permanently over a decayed or damaged tooth. Every crown process begins with preparation of the tooth so the crown will fit over it. Afterward, we make an impression of the prepared tooth digitally or with an elastic material that most often is sent to a dental laboratory to create the new crown.

It’s at this point where crown composition and design can diverge. Most of the first known crowns were made of metal (usually gold or silver), which is still a component in some crowns today. A few decades ago dental porcelain, a form of ceramic that could provide a tooth-like appearance, began to emerge as a crown material. The first types of porcelain could match a real tooth’s color or texture, but were brittle and didn’t hold up well to biting forces. Dentists developed a crown with a metal interior for strength and a fused outside layer of porcelain for appearance.

This hybrid became the crown design of choice up until the last decade. It is being overtaken, though, by all-ceramic crowns made with new forms of more durable porcelain, some strengthened with a material known as Lucite. Today, only about 40% of crowns installed annually are the metal-porcelain hybrid, while all-porcelain crowns are growing in popularity.

Of course, these newer porcelain crowns and the attention to the artistic detail they require are often more expensive than more traditional crowns. If you depend on dental insurance to help with your dental care costs, you may find your policy maximum benefit for these newer type crowns won’t cover the costs.

If you want the most affordable price and are satisfied primarily with restored function, a basic crown is still a viable choice. If, however, you would like a crown that does the most for your smile, you may want to consider one with newer, stronger porcelain and made with greater artistic detail by the dental technician. In either case, the crown you receive will restore lost function and provide some degree of improvement to the appearance of a damaged tooth.

If you would like more information on porcelain crown, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.

By Richard H. Lestz DDS, PC
March 06, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

How crowns and bridges from your dentist in Forest Hills can rebuild your smilerestorative dentistry

If your smile is damaged, you may be tempted to hide it. If you notice yourself not smiling because of broken or missing teeth, it’s time to restore your smile. The answer is dental crowns and bridgework! Thanks to modern materials, techniques, and technology, you can restore your smile to greatness. Dr. Richard Lestz in Forest Hills, NY wants to share how crowns and bridges can make you smile again.

Dental crowns are the state-of-the-art answer to repairing damaged, decayed teeth. A dental crown surrounds your tooth in a protective, armor-like covering that is resistant to fracture. Crowns make your teeth stronger by creating a firm surface for chewing. When you bite down, the stress of biting is evenly distributed across your entire tooth. In contrast, a large filling can make a tooth more prone to fracture because it divides your tooth into sections, so when you bite, your tooth can fracture.

Dental crowns are made of natural-looking porcelain which is translucent and reflects light, just like natural tooth enamel. After placement, your porcelain crown will be virtually indistinguishable from your natural teeth. You can also choose from porcelain-fused-to-metal, or PFM, crowns if you want the added strength of a metal framework.

Dental bridgework is the perfect answer to fill in the gaps created by lost teeth. A bridge is cemented onto supporting teeth on either side of the space, creating a continuous chewing surface. Bridges look natural and will restore the beauty of your smile.

Dental bridges have advantages over partials because bridges don’t move when you speak or eat. You also don’t ever remove bridges to clean them, making them a convenient, discreet tooth replacement option. Dental bridges are made of light, sturdy materials which are lifelike and beautiful.

To view more detailed information about crown and bridge services, please visit the Crowns and Bridges page on the website at

Dental crowns and bridges can restore your smile and your self-confidence. You deserve a proud, beautiful smile and now you can have it! For more information about dental crowns, bridges and other restorative and cosmetic treatments call Dr. Lestz in Forest Hills, NY today!

By Richard H. Lestz DDS, PC
March 01, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

When they’re introducing a new movie, actors often take a moment to pay tribute to the people who helped make it happen — like, you know, their dentists. At least that’s what Charlize Theron did at the premiere of her new spy thriller, Atomic Blonde.

"I just want to take a quick moment to thank my dentists," she told a Los Angeles audience as they waited for the film to roll. "I don’t even know if they’re here, but I just want to say thank you."

Why did the starring actress/producer give a shout-out to her dental team? It seems she trained and fought so hard in the action sequences that she actually cracked two teeth!

“I had severe tooth pain, which I never had in my entire life,” Theron told an interviewer from Variety. At first, she thought it was a cavity — but later, she found out it was more serious: One tooth needed a root canal, and the other had to be extracted and replaced with a dental implant — but first, a bone grafting procedure was needed. “I had to put a donor bone in [the jaw] to heal,” she noted, “and then I had another surgery to put a metal screw in there.”

Although it might sound like the kind of treatment only an action hero would need, bone grafting is now a routine part of many dental implant procedures. The reason is that without a sufficient volume of good-quality bone, implant placement is difficult or impossible. That’s because the screw-like implant must be firmly joined with the jawbone, so it can support the replacement tooth.

Fortunately, dentists have a way to help your body build new bone: A relatively small amount of bone material can be placed in the missing tooth’s socket in a procedure called bone grafting. This may come from your own body or, more likely, it may be processed bone material from a laboratory. The donor material can be from a human, animal or synthetic source, but because of stringent processing techniques, the material is safe for human use. Once it is put in place your body takes over, using the grafted material as a scaffold on which to build new bone cells. If jawbone volume is insufficient for implants, it can often be restored to a viable point in a few months.

Better yet, when grafting material is placed in the tooth socket immediately after extraction, it can keep most of the bone loss from occurring in the first place, enabling an implant to be placed as soon as possible — even before the end of a movie’s shooting schedule.

Will Atomic Blonde prove to be an action-movie classic? Only time will tell. But one thing’s for sure: When Charlize Theron walks down the red carpet, she won’t have to worry about a gap in her smile.

If you have questions about bone grafting or dental implants, please contact our office or schedule a consultation. You can read more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Dental Implant Surgery” and “Immediate Dental Implant.”

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Richard H. Lestz DDS, PC

Forest Hills, NY Cosmetic Dentist
Richard H. Lestz D.D.S., P.C.
11045 Queens Blvd Ste 109
Forest Hills, NY 11375
(718) 544-9100
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