Health & Wellness Tips

FAQ’s About Crowns

Frequently Asked Questions about Crowns


What is a crown and why do I need one?

If there is not enough tooth structure left to support a filling, inlay or onlay then the tooth must be covered up completely with a crown to protect it. If there is a large existing filling that is failing or a tooth has broken and by removing that filling and preparing the tooth there is not enough natural tooth structure, a crown is recommended.

What is the difference between a crown and an onlay or inlay?

A crown completely covers the tooth and no tooth structure is exposed.

A dental inlay fills the space in between the cusps, or rounded edges, at the center of the tooth’s surface.

The dental onlay works like an inlay but covers one or more cusps or the entire biting surface of the tooth. Because of their extensive coverage, dental onlays are sometimes referred to as “partial crowns.”

Basically, the more tooth structure that is missing will determine which type of restoration is needed.

What is a buildup?

A buildup is needed when the loss of tooth structure is such that it will not hold a crown so the tooth has to be “built up” with a material and then shaped so that a crown will adhere.

What is a post and core?

post and core crown is a type of dental restoration required where there is an inadequate amount of sound tooth tissue remaining to retain a conventional crown on a tooth that has had a root canal. A post is cemented into a prepared root canal, which retains a core restoration, which retains the final crown.

Why can’t I just get a filling?

A filling requires tooth structure to hold it in place and without sufficient tooth structure a filling will not stay in the tooth. That is why it is very important to visit your dentist regularly so that problems can be detected when they are small and can be handled with a simple filling.

Why don’t I just take the tooth out? It is much cheaper.

That is certainly an option but remember you only have so many teeth and throughout your life the loss of even a few teeth cause your bite to collapse causing more expensive problems down the road. The road to dentures is not one you really want to go down if it can be avoided. A set of conventional dentures that fits well and that a patient can wear has about 30% chewing efficiency as natural teeth. Implant supported dentures are life changing for most patients but come with a hefty price tag costing into the tens of thousands of dollars.

Here at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio, we can often do crowns in one visit with leading edge CEREC technology. Call today for more information!

Edward J Camacho DDS

FAQ’s About Missing Teeth

I can still chew so why bother replacing missing teeth?

Every time you lose a tooth it sets up a snowball effect collapsing your bite. Over time, this collapse puts stress and strain on the remaining teeth eventually causing problems that lead to more tooth loss. Even losing one tooth can be detrimental to your oral health. Open spaces from missing teeth cause adjacent teeth to drift and lean since they now have no support and also cause opposing teeth to drift into the space compromising those teeth as well.

By the time you have several teeth extracted you are already altering your diet to softer, easier to chew foods. Who wants to end up eating baby food!


Can losing teeth affect how I look?

Well, besides the “hillbilly” look, losing teeth can affect how your whole face looks. Along with the loss of teeth and a collapsed bite, changes to your actual face occur. When your bite collapses you lose “vertical dimension.” This is the distance between your chin and your nose. The more vertical dimension that is lost, the older you look. This loss of vertical dimension also makes it more difficult to make well fitting dentures when you get to that point. The amount of money you “save” by just taking out a tooth eventually will cost thousands to restore vertical dimension and fabricate dentures. No amount of face lifts or surgical procedures can restore a more youthful look if vertical dimension is lost.

I don’t care about how I look anyway, so why not just get dentures?

As we get older proper nutrition is key to leading a healthy and happy life. A set of well fitting dentures only has about 30% chewing efficiency of natural teeth. That is why denture wearers usually have limited their diet to soft, easy to chew foods that may not be as nutritious. Lack of proper nutrition can lead to other health problems. Weight loss is also a common problem. With weight loss comes ill fitting dentures that can’t be worn so not being able to eat at all accelerates other health problems.

Once I get dentures then I don’t have to worry about my teeth anymore, right?

Not exactly, dentures do not last forever so depending on what age you get them you will need many sets throughout your life. Dentures also put stress on the bone that holds them in place eventually causing loss of bone in the ridge so every time you need a new set they are less likely to fit as well, leading to more dietary restrictions and constant use of denture adhesives.

Here at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio, we are skilled in replacing missing teeth and can help you restore your bite and give you back a reason to smile!

Call today 210-493-9944



What is a Worthwhile Investment in These Troubling Times?

I wish I had never fixed my teeth”    

                            said no one ever                                       

The dictionary defines “Investment” as: the act of putting money or effort into something to make a profit or achieve a result. Most of us invest in a home or cars. This certainly is fitting since we need a place to live and get back and forth to our jobs, buy food and get medical care. If you have ever been without a car you soon realize that having a reliable means of transportation is a necessity even if you work from home. Investing in an education also fits the definition since usually the better educated you are, the result is higher earning potential. A higher income means a better quality of life. A better quality of life is the basic on why we invest in things whether it is an immediate result or for the future.

People want to be “wellthy”

People want a better quality of life and they want to be “wellthy.” They not only want to look better, they want to feel better and they don’t want poor health to keep them from doing the things that make them happy today or out in the future. Americans spent over a trillion dollars last year on health and wellness products and services to keep themselves healthy and feeling better. The old adage, You cannot enjoy your wealth, if you cannot enjoy your health, is something that stands the test of time. Steve Jobs, one of the wealthiest men in the world died at age 56. In his final days he was quoted as saying “When a person goes into the operating room, he will realize that there is one book that he has yet to finish reading – “Book of Healthy Life”.

Invest in yourself

An investment in yourself is something that will always pay off. Exercising, eating healthy and getting regular check- ups is far more important than a designer purse or an overpriced vacation.

Most people do not equate fixing their teeth with health and quality of life. Recent studies indicate that the indirect cost of lost productivity due to severe periodontitis (gum disease) alone amounts to $54 billion annually, which accounts for a significant proportion of the estimated $442 billion cost of oral diseases (World Oral Health Forum 2017 )

Poor oral health affects all aspects of life

Unhealthy teeth and gums affects your quality of life probably more so than you realize. It affects confidence and self-esteem which directly affects the type of job and even mate you are able to get. It affects your ability to eat healthier foods. And can even affect your speech. Toothaches and other oral emergencies, due to neglect, amounts to lost wages, unnecessary pain and holding yourself back in life due to embarrassment. If you have oral disease you have bad breath, there is no way to get around it and bad breath will affect you getting a job, a raise and will turn others off from wanting to be around you. Most people are too polite to say anything and you will most likely get some other excuse as to why you weren’t hired or why you did not get that second date or why someone else was chosen over you for something. Having to work or be around someone with bad breath is distracting.

With recent studies linking poor oral health to everything from low birth weight, diabetes and heart disease an unhealthy mouth means an unhealthy body and an unhealthy body reduces your quality of life significantly.

Where does cosmetic dentistry fit in?

Not everyone has to have a Hollywood smile but we see so many patients who do not move forward with basic needs such as treatment for gum disease, regular cleanings or taking care of decay or broken teeth. A healthy mouth is more important than aesthetics. Some treatments such as straightening teeth have the result of making things pretty but that is just a side benefit since we know that straight teeth are easier to clean. Teeth that are easier to clean are less prone to gum disease. Fortunately, here at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio, we can handle all of your needs and use materials that get you to healthier state but are also aesthetic.

Vitamin B-12 May Help Canker Sores

 Difference between cold sores and canker sores

Cold sores and canker sores are often confused with each other, they are not the same. Cold sores, also called fever blisters or herpes simplex type 1, are groups of painful, fluid-filled blisters. Unlike canker sores, cold sores are caused by a virus and are extremely contagious. Also, cold sores typically appear outside the mouth — usually under the nose, around the lips, or under the chin. Canker sores occur inside the mouth.

Taking B12 supplements can help reduce your outbreaks

In people with recurrent canker sores (also known as aphthous stomatitis), a nighttime dose of 1000 mcg of vitamin B-12 was found to reduce the number and duration of outbreaks. It also decreased pain as well. According to the research, “The average outbreak duration and the average number of ulcers per month decreased in both groups during the first four months of the trial. However, the duration of outbreaks, the number of ulcers, and the level of pain were reduced significantly at five and six months of treatment with vitamin B12. This reduction occurred regardless of initial vitamin B12 levels in the blood. During the last month of treatment a significant number of participants in the intervention group reached ‘no aphthous ulcers status.

L-lysine may also help

There is also some evidence that the amino acid L-lysine may help to prevent canker sores and reduce healing time. 500 mg 3 times a day is the recommended dosage. Always check with your doctor before starting any supplements.

What to do if you already have a breakout.

We also carry Orasoothe, an oral coating rinse that is even safe to swallow, is effective for pain relief for multiple affected sites.  SockIT!, an oral wound dressing, is convenient for one or two affected sites. It comes in a tube so it is easy to carry for fast relief. Call the office for more information.

We hope that you find our posts helpful and please feel free to forward this data to anyone who suffers from canker sores. Here at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio we strive to educate our patients on all aspects of oral health. Dr. Camacho is committed to providing the very best care with the latest technology in a non-judgmental atmosphere.

If there is something you would like more information on or have suggestions for a post please email June Camacho at We look forward to hearing from you!


*excerpted from Web Md and Consumer Labs

3D X-ray Technology Now at Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio

In the continuous journey to provide impeccable treatment and remain on the leading edge of all available dental technology, Cosmetic Dentistry of San Antonio has now upgraded our basic 2 dimensional panoramic x-ray machine with the latest 3D x-ray scanner.

From extractions to endodontics, orthodontics to implants, 3D scans provide valuable information vital to diagnosis and determining the best course of treatment.

A dental 3D scan allows Dr. Camacho to view dental anatomy from different angles. It also can help gain a better view of bone structures, root positions, the ability to locate canals and root fractures, as well as provide more accurate measurements of anatomical structures with very little radiation (about the same amount as normal background radiation from being on earth for about 3 days).

“If you are doing implants, 3D x-ray technology is essential,” says Dr. Camacho. “Since I started using a 3D scanner, I have detected pathology that was never visible on traditional x-rays. For example, patients who have continued pain on a tooth that has been treated with a root canal often reveals a fractured root. If the dentist had this x-ray prior to treatment, a root canal would not have been treatment planned, since you cannot successfully treat a tooth with a fractured root. This would have saved the patient unnecessary treatment, saved them money and would have allowed the dentist to offer a more viable option.” states veteran dentist Dr. Edward J Camacho.

3D dental imaging delivers the power of dependability, providing fast and accurate imaging that’s consistent-and thus, reliable.