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Concepts of Temporary Restorations

Learn how a “customized” temporary is a blueprint for success

By Dr. Brian P. LeSage

This article is endorsed by the
American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry.


An example of a smile altered by subtle rotations of teeth, chipped edges and old discolored restorations.
Stone Model.
Using customized temporary restorations, new tooth forms change the angulation of the rotated teeth, repair the chipped incisal edges and create a more pleasing smile for the patient to evaluate.

Customized Temporary Restorations — Personalized Prototypes

Here's why customized temporary restorations serve as true personalized prototypes. They can be used to test:

  • A new look — to evaluate tooth colors, shades, shapes, proportions and compatibility with gingival (gum) tissue health.
  • Facial balance and harmony — do the new teeth harmonize with the patient's facial form and lips? Do they support the lips adequately? Is the smile line right?
  • Function — do the new teeth facilitate normal speech, biting, chewing and smiling?

From Creation And Trial To Delivery

With any smile makeover “test drive,” a sufficient amount of time is necessary for an individual to appreciate and become comfortable with the changes before proceeding to final crowns or veneers. It is also important to note that further refinement of the customized temporary restorations after their initial creation can provide additional enhancements to oral and facial relations, elements of color, bite and functionality. Oftentimes, it is these subsequent refinements to the initial customized temporary restorations that enable them to be truly diagnostic in creating the final and permanent restorations.

Lastly, it is imperative that the vision created with the tried and tested customized temporaries is replicated in the final result. Specialized transfer techniques and records are used to convey all details of color, contour, shape and harmony to the dental technician, the artisan who will perfectly replicate the details of the customized temporaries in the final restorations. The only difference is that the materials used in the final restorations will more exactly mimic the translucency, shades and colors of natural tooth enamel, but in more durable dental porcelains.