A dental crown, or cap, is a type of restoration that can be used to restore a tooth that is significantly damaged or decayed. The crown is custom made to fit over the entire tooth, starting at the gum line, in order to restore the tooth to its original shape and size.
Dental crowns can be made of gold, porcelain, or porcelain fused to metal; porcelain crowns are popular because they match the natural color and appearance of your teeth. Our dentist will help you determine which type of dental crown is right for your smile.
Your smile may benefit from a crown if a tooth is damaged or decayed to the point that a dental filling will not provide a successful restoration. Crowns can also be used for a number of other restorative and aesthetic purposes, including:
- To protect a tooth following root canal treatment
- To anchor and attach a dental bridge
- To cover and complete a dental implant
- To enhance the beauty of your smile
- To improve a misshapen tooth
- To strengthen a tooth that is fractured or weakened
- To support a large filling when little natural tooth structure remains
What are the steps involved in a Dental Crown?
If the dental crown will be placed over your original tooth, such as with dental bridges and root canals, the tooth or teeth must be prepared so that the crown can fit snugly on top of the tooth structure. Tooth preparation and the delivery of the permanent crown are usually done in two steps.
First, our dentist will numb the area to be treated with local anesthetic. Next, the outside tooth will be reshaped by shaving and removing enough of the tooth material to allow the crown to sit on top and fit with the rest of your teeth. Once this process is complete, a model or impression will be made of your teeth. This model is sent out to the cosmetic dental laboratory to fabricate the permanent crown to match your smile. A temporary crown will be created and placed on the prepared tooth to seal and protect the tooth temporarily until your permanent crown is ready for placement.
During the placement of the permanent crown, our dentist will remove the temporary crown, ensure the prepared tooth is clean, and place the permanent crown over the prepared tooth. Our dentist may need to make adjustments to ensure your crown fits and feels natural in your mouth before permanently cementing the crown into place.
With proper care and follow up, your dental crown is strong and designed to last for years. Crowns need to be brushed and flossed daily like regular teeth, and need to be evaluated every 6 months by our team during your regular exam to ensure that the structure is sound. Like most dental restorations, crowns will eventually need to be replaced.
To find out whether a dental crown is right for you, we encourage you to contact us today. We are dedicated to providing the best possible dental care for you.