Understanding Dental Crowns

Posted on: 18 November 2015


If you want to improve your smile, you ought to consider getting dental crowns. The dental crown procedure is not as complicated as it sounds. The following will educate you on what dental crowns are, their applications and the procedure for getting them.

What is a Dental Crown?

This is a tooth-like cap that is similar to a tooth and used to modify the size, shape and overall appearance of your tooth. There are many different materials used to make crowns. These include stainless steel, porcelain and resin.

Applications of Dental Crowns

Dental crowns can be used for a variety of reasons, including the following:

  • Prevent a weakened tooth from breaking
  • Hold together a tooth that is cracked
  • Restore a tooth that's broken
  • Cover teeth that have fillings
  • Cover an implant
  • Cover discoloured teeth

Procedure For Getting a Dental Crown

During your first visit, the dentist will take some x-rays to examine the roots of your tooth and the bone surrounding the tooth. If your tooth has decay or could get infected or injured, your dentist will first perform a root canal procedure. It involves removing the pulp and nerve of your tooth as well as cleaning the inside parts of your tooth.

Your doctor will numb or anesthetize your tooth and the area surrounding the tooth. The tooth that is being treated will be filed along the sides and chewing surfaces to create space for your crown. The amount of surface that will be removed will depend on the crown you are going to get; for example, metal crowns are thin and need little tooth structure compared to porcelain crowns. If a large part of your tooth is missing owing to damage or decay, your dentist may fill it to enable it support your crown.

When the tooth has been reshaped, your dentist will create a model of your tooth to help create a crown that is a perfect match. Your dentist will first apply a temporary dental crown to protect and cover the tooth while the permanent crown is being crafted.

At your second visit to the dentist, he/she will take out the temporary crown and replace it with the permanent one.

How to Care For a Temporary Dental Crown

When you get a temporary dental crown, your doctor may give you a list of precautions. You will be advised to avoid chewy or sticky foods like caramel or chewing gum, because they are likely to pull off your crown.

When eating food, do most of the chewing on the side of the mouth that does not have the temporary crown. You should also avoid foods like raw vegetables or crunchy foods that could break or dislodge the crown.

When flossing your teeth, slide the material out instead of lifting it out as this might pull off the crown.

For more information, talk with your dentist or a local dental clinic to see if a dental crown can suit your needs.