Teeth weaken and become more vulnerable to cracks, decay, and discoloration. If you’ve started to notice that your smile isn’t what it used to be, a dental crown can help you bring it back to what it once was.
Crowns are tooth-shaped coverings that cover over and surround the tooth in order to restore it to its normal size and shape.
Once in place, it covers the portion of a tooth above the gum line.
There are a number of reasons your dentist may recommend crown work. Crowns are a useful way of trying to preserve your original teeth instead of replacing them.
Situations that occur to consider a dental crown are:
Steel crowns are a prefabricated version used primarily for temporary purposes. This type of crown will protect your tooth while the permanent crown is being manufactured.
It also the most common type used for children when a baby tooth is being protected. Steel crowns are easier to place because they don’t require multiple appointments and are more cost effective. They will simply come out when that baby tooth is ready to naturally come out but will protect the tooth from further decay or damage.
The least expensive type of crown available, these crowns may look better aesthetically than a stainless steel crown, but wear down eventually and are more susceptible to breaking and chipping than porcelain. For this reason we only use them as temporary crowns in our dental practice.
Porcelain is one of the best tooth colored dental crown materials. These materials provide the best natural color match than any of the others. They are a great option if aesthetics is a primary concern, or for patients who exhibit metal allergies. The new porcelain and zirconia materials can allow minimal tooth preparation and higher strengths when compared to metal based crowns. Our practice is happy to be a metal free practice. We only place porcelain and zirconia crowns.
Technically, when using the term “Dental Crown” you are referring to crowns made with porcelain, to distinguish them from steel crowns, which would be referred to simply as “Crowns”. This version can be color matched to your natural teeth but are more wearing on the opposing teeth when compared to metal and resin.
Additionally, porcelain can chip over time. And, while they have the ability to look like normal teeth, the metal underneath can sometimes show through as a dark line.
Overall, these crowns are a good choice for all teeth, especially when used with long bridges so the metal can provide extra strength and support.
From start to finish, the process of receiving a crown will take a a couple dental visits.
Your tooth’s enamel will be drilled down to specific dimensions. This will allow the crown to fit over it. This procedure will include administration of a local anesthetic so you won’t feel any discomfort. After the reshaping, a digital impression (model) will be made of the subject tooth and the immediate teeth around it. After the impression is made, a temporary crown will be fitted to protect your tooth until the permanent crown is ready.
The digital impression will be sent to a dental lab that will use it to create a custom crown to fit the prepared area. It can take up to 3 weeks for the custom crown to be sent to Baer Dental.
To fit your permanent crown, a local anesthetic will be administered again to avoid any discomfort. Then the crown will be fitted into place and then bonded to the tooth with a permanent dental cement. Once set in place, crowns will typically last 5-15 years.
While crowns are designed to last, they can sometimes loosen or fall out. The best way to ensure they last is with a good oral hygiene routine, just like you would for your natural teeth.
If you think you may benefit from a crown placement, contact us today to schedule an appointment.Contact US