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Temporary dental cement is an agent that is used to cement or bond a crown to a cut tooth surface. This can also be used as a temporary filling before placing a final filling in a cavity. This is a very important and useful substance in dentistry as it helps the dentist to buy time before doing a final procedure. There are many more uses of temporary cement in other dental procedures. Given below are details regarding the various uses of this product and what precautions to take when you get a temporary filling or crown fitted in your mouth.

For Temporary Fillings

A temporary filling can also be done with the help of temporary cement. This filling can be done for two reasons. Sometimes, a person may have a tooth decay that extends till the region very close to the pulp without touching it. Patient may complain of slight sensitivity to hot food. The dentist, in a last ditch effort before there is need for root canal treatment, fills the tooth with a temporary cement, which often contains agents such as calcium that help to rebuild the dentin in the tooth. This then helps to form a bridge of dentin which prevents the caries (soft decayed area) from progressing any further and reaching the pulp.

For Dental Crowns

Temporary dental crown cement is often used to help a temporary crown bond to a prepared tooth. This crown is given on a temporary basis for two reasons. Firstly, so as to prevent the cut and prepared surface of the tooth from getting chipped. If the prepared tooth surface gets chipped, then the final crown may not fit properly. The second reason is that this helps to buy time for the laboratory to prepare the final crown.

Precautions to Take After Getting a Temporary Cement Filling

There are certain precautions that a person needs to take when he has a temporary cement filling or crowns in his mouth. These include:
  • The shear strength of this type of cement is relatively low. This is the reason why it tend to be very brittle. They have a high chance of fracturing if subjected to excess masticatory forces when used as a temporary filling. This is the reason why it is strongly advised not to bite from the side where you may have a temporary filling.
  • Do not bite very hard substances from the side where you have a temporary tooth filling. Also, if you have a temporary crown fitted in your front teeth, then do not bite into anything hard, as the crown has a high chance of fracturing or getting dislodged then.
  • Avoid sticky foods completely when you have a temporary filling. If you do not pay heed to this warning, then along with chewing gum, you may end up chewing your filling or crown.
  • Be extra careful when brushing or flossing when you have a temporary filling or crown. You may end up dislodging the crown or filling if you are very vigorous in your flossing. Ask your dentist to give you specific instructions regarding care of a temporary filling so that you don't end up intentionally fracturing it.
There are over-the-counter versions of this dental cement that are available which people who do not have dental insurance are very tempted to try out. However beware! Your teeth are the last structures of your body that you want to try stunts with. This is because in a desperate attempt to do self dental treatment, there have been cases of people extracting their own teeth or using super glue to stick their crowns back. And the results haven't been very pretty. So if you need to go in for dental treatment that will require temporary cement, it is best to leave it in the hands of a dentist. However, if it is not possible to visit a dentist, then you should at least call up your dentist and ask for instructions on how to deal with a crown that has come loose.