If missing or damaged teeth have you hiding your smile, dental crowns are one restorative option we offer at Downtown Dental Associates. A dental crown is a tooth-shaped cap placed over a tooth to cover it, reconstruct its shape and size, improve its appearance and reignite your smile.
Advantages of Dental Crowns
- Restores self-confidence
- Alleviates tooth decay
- Prevents oral diseases
- Allows you the freedom to eat your favorite foods
Permanent crowns can be made from a variety of materials:
- Metals: gold alloy or base-metal alloy such as nickel. Less tooth structure is removed with metal crowns, and they withstand biting and chewing well, rarely chip or break and are long-lasting.
- Porcelain-fused-to-metal: can be color matched to adjacent teeth, but more wearing to the opposing teeth occurs compared to metal crowns. They look like natural teeth.
- All-ceramic or all-porcelain: provide best natural color match than any other crown type. A good choice for front teeth.
Crowns, or caps, are used to restore broken or cracked teeth. The new metal-free crowns eliminate the ugly black line you may have seen next to the gum line on older crowns. For decades the standard in dentistry for crown and bridge restoration materials has been the PFM (porcelain-fused-to-metal). The framework for the dental crown was produced in metal and then covered with a porcelain layer.
Now with the evolution of all ceramic materials and their higher esthetic qualities, dental patients have options. Metal free framework beneath the porcelain gives excellent aesthetic qualities to make the final restoration extremely natural looking.
Dental Crown Candidates
Dental crowns are a great solution for those who have:
- Teeth grinding problems
- Improper bites
- Old, worn, decayed teeth
- Discolored, misshapen teeth
Dental Crown Procedure
It usually takes two separate dental visits to place a dental crown.
During the first visit, the dentist will numb your tooth and surrounding gum tissue. Then the tooth is trimmed to remove any decay, loose parts of the teeth, and to make sure the crown fits the tooth snugly.
Once the tooth is shaped, dental impressions are made of it, and surrounding teeth to make sure the bit will line up. The impressions are sent to the dental lab. Your dental assistant puts a temporary crown on the tooth while the permanent crown is made in the lab. It usually takes around two weeks for the crown to be made.
At the second appointment, the temporary crown is removed and dental cement is put inside the crown and the permanent crown is placed over the tooth. Any excess cement is scrapped away and the crown placement is finished.
Dental Crown FAQs
How much do crowns cost?
The cost varies depending on the number of crowns needed and what type is chosen. If you have dental insurance, a part of the cost may be covered.
What is the lifespan of a dental crown?
Dental crowns can last between 5-15 years according to the Consumer Guide to Dentistry. It really depends on the amount of wear and tear and your oral habits.
How do I care for my dental crown?
It doesn’t require special care, but just because it is covered it doesn’t mean the tooth underneath is protected from decay or gum disease. Follow good dental hygiene by brushing twice a day, flossing daily and having routine dental checkups.