All About Dental Crowns

Dental crowns. What are they? What do they do? When a tooth is damaged or badly decayed, a simple filling won’t work.

However, a tooth-shaped cover can be placed over the remaining tooth.

A dental crown, or cap, is used to hold together pieces of a cracked tooth or to restore the shape and function of a damaged/decayed tooth. Crowns may also be placed over teeth that are badly discolored.

What are Crowns Made Of?

Dental crowns can be made of many materials, including:

  • Ceramic
  • Metal
  • Zirconia
  • Porcelain fused to metal
  • Porcelain fused to zirconia
dental crowns

All metal crowns are stronger than ceramic and porcelain and are better choices for back teeth. Ceramic and porcelain are tooth-colored and look more natural.

Placement of Crowns

To place a crown the dentist first must file down the tooth to make room for the crown. If there is not enough tooth left to attach the crown to, the dentist will need to build up a foundation.

Then, the dentist will use special tools to push the gum down around the tooth and take impressions of the tooth.

The dentist will also take impressions of the surrounding teeth to ensure that the crown fits properly in your bite.

The impressions are sent to the lab where the crown will be made. While your permanent is being made, you will wear a temporary crown.

At the second visit, the temporary crown is removed, and the permanent crown will be placed. If your dentist uses a Cerac or CAD-CAM unit, your crown can be made and placed on the same day.

Crowns usually last around seven years but can last much longer if they are well cared for.

After Placement

You should not experience and discomfort after your crown is placed but if your nerve remains intact, you may experience temporary sensitivity to cold.

Crowns protect the tooth from decay but the gum line is still exposed and can develop cavities. It is important to continue to brush twice a day and floss daily to maintain good dental hygiene.

Crowns can become loose and fall out, if this happens, contact your dentist immediately.

Dental Crowns in Chicago

If your child needs a crown, contact Dr. Smith today to schedule an appointment!

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