Your teeth may not always be perfect. Over the course of your lifetime, you will develop cavities, your teeth may become discolored and they may break or become loose. When this happens, you have a choice: Accept the way your teeth look and any discomfort that comes along with it, or do something about it.
The solution to many of these dental issues can be found with the help of dental crowns. Dental crowns are a tooth shaped cap. They fit over the tooth and can be used to cover up any broken or chipped teeth, to strengthen any loose teeth or to cover teeth that have become discolored. The dental crown is designed to cover the entire part of the tooth that is visible.
It is common to find people that have heard of dental crowns before. They may or may not realize exactly what they are, what they can do and the procedure required to put them in place.
What are dental crowns?
Dental crowns can be made from many different materials. The most common types of materials used for dental crowns are:
- Stainless Steel
- Metals, Such as a Gold Alloy
- Porcelain Fused to Metal
Dentists can use temporary crowns that are generally made of an acrylic or stainless steel. These crowns are usually prefabricated and are put in place to restore the appearance or to protect a tooth until a permanent crown can be made.
A permanent crown is made from one of the above mentioned materials. The choice of materials will depend on the look that a person wants. The permanent crown is made in a laboratory and is custom fitted to the patient.
What can crowns do?
The crowns can be used to restore a tooth that has been broken. When the crown is in place, it will act as the tooth did in the past. There will be no gaps in the teeth thanks to a properly fabricated dental crown. Crowns can also help keep teeth that are loose in place. They can help when teeth have deteriorated due to tooth decay. Teeth that are discolored by age or by habits such as smoking can benefit from crowns as well. Dental crowns are also put into place when a person has had a large filling such as a root canal. The crown will protect the filling and keep it in place. Here’s a more complete list:
- Strengthen a damaged tooth.
- Replace a large filling.
- Cover a root canal.
- Provide an anchor for a dental bridge.
- Finish a dental implant.
How crowns are installed.
Crowns are done in the dentist office. A temporary crown requires a single visit. Dentist will give an examination to determine the extent of the damage to the tooth. Once the tooth is deemed ready of the crown, it will be filed down to make room for the crown. This is done under general anesthesia. The amount of tooth that has to be removed will depend on the material of the crown. If a tooth has been broken or chipped, it may require a filling to build the tooth up.
Once the tooth is prepared, a dentist will take an impression of the tooth. The crown will be made from this impression. A temporary crown can be put into place while the permanent crown is made. Once the permanent crown is ready, the temporary crown will be removed and the permanent crown will be cemented into place.