What is a dental crown?
A dental crown is essentially a tooth-shaped cap attached over an existing tooth or used to replace a missing tooth. It can be made from various materials, such as porcelain, ceramic, glass ionomers, metals, gold, silver alloys, and more. Some of them resemble actual teeth, such as porcelain crowns, and some are extremely visible, such as gold crowns. The crown can also be placed on any of the teeth, so the location of the crown is one of the most important factors when selecting a material.
How does a dental crown work? Are they a crown or a cover?
Dental crowns are caps for your damaged teeth. They don’t simply cover the cosmetic concerns, like dental veneers, but essentially replace the uppermost parts of the teeth. The dentist takes accurate impressions of your teeth, sends an order to the dental laboratory to produce the desired prosthetic, and attaches it to your teeth. However, you can only receive dental crowns once the existing teeth are filed down to a small stub. If you get a dental crown to replace a missing tooth, you’ll need an implant to support the crown.
Why use dental crowns?
- Severe Fractures: Your tooth can get fractured for numerous reasons, such as injuries, trauma, accidents, and sporting injuries. If your tooth is severely fractured, the dentist may need to remove the enamel from your affected tooth, replacing it with a crown.
- Severe Decay: Bacterial activity and plaque lead to cavities that eventually erode the enamel, leading to a hole in the teeth. Small cavities can be sealed with dental fillings or onlays. However, if the cavity is too large for fillings, the dentist may recommend a dental crown.
- Root Canal: If a cavity is left untreated for long periods, the infection may eventually spread into the root canal, inflaming the pulp tissues. The infected tissues have to be removed via root canal therapy, leaving the tooth weakened. As such, a dental crown is attached to the tooth for strength.
- Cosmetic Concerns: People often get dental crowns for cosmetic factors. If you have various concerns with your teeth, such as stains, intrinsic discoloration, cracks, and fractures, you can get a dental crown to conceal all the problems. It allows you to project the image of perfect teeth.
- Missing Tooth: You can replace a missing tooth with a dental crown. However, the dental crown must be fastened on something, such as an implant. You can get an implant, i.e., a titanium post drilled into the jawbone to replace the missing tooth’s root structure. Once your jawbone heals, the dental crown is attached to the implant, replacing the missing tooth. The result looks completely natural, indistinguishable from natural teeth in appearance, function, or sensation.
What different types of crowns are available?
Dental crowns are available in various materials, including porcelain crown, ceramic crown, zirconia crown, metal crowns, silver amalgam crown, composite resin crown, and a combination of materials, such as a porcelain-fused-to-metal crown.
What is the best dental crown material?
The best dental crown material depends on various factors, including your tooth’s location, how much tooth is visible, the position of your gums, the color of the surrounding teeth, the amount of bite force sustained by the tooth, and your desires. Porcelain crowns are generally favored for front teeth because they resemble natural enamel, making them indistinguishable from other teeth. However, metal crowns are often recommended for anterior teeth because they remain out of sight.
What is the dental crown procedure?
- The dentist carefully examines the affected tooth in need of a crown. They might take dental x-rays, pictures, or impressions of your surrounding teeth.
- Your tooth is filed down to a small stub to remove the outermost layers of your teeth.
- An impression of the prepared tooth is taken to prepare a crown accordingly.
- The impression is sent to a dental laboratory that prepares the crown.
- A temporary crown is placed over the prepared tooth for protection.
- You have to wait several weeks while the permanent tooth crown is made.
- Once the permanent tooth crown is prepared, the dentist cements it over your tooth.
What is the link between a root canal and a crown?
The link between a root canal and a crown is simple. A root canal therapy leaves your affected tooth in a vulnerable position without the underlying pulp tissues and nerves. The affected tooth has a high risk of being damaged due to external impact, which would necessitate tooth removal. A dental crown protects the weakened tooth, thereby preventing the eventual loss of a tooth.
What can I do to ensure my crowns last a long time?
- Brush your teeth twice a day using gentle strokes.
- Floss your teeth regularly.
- Avoid chewing on hard foods that involve exerting a significant bite force.
- Use mouthguards while playing sports.
- Use night guards while sleeping if you suffer from bruxism.
Why does my crown hurt?
It’s perfectly normal for your crown to feel uncomfortable and hurt slightly for the first day or two — that’s because you’re still adjusting to the sensation. However, if your crown starts hurting later, the underlying tooth may be impacted for some reason. Possible reasons for the pain include a chipped crown, an allergic reaction, or underlying gum disease. Please contact your dentist immediately.
Where can I get dental crowns?
URBN Dental is one of the most reputable state-of-the-art dental clinics in Houston, TX, for dental crowns and other forms of restorative dentistry. We use the highest quality of materials and use dental crowns prepared by DaVinci Laboratories, one of the country’s leading producer of dental products. For more information, please schedule an appointment with our dental offices in Midtown and Uptown Houston.