What is a Dental Crown?A dental crown is a cap or cover placed over a damaged or weakened tooth to restore its shape, size, strength, and appearance. The crown completely encases the visible region of the tooth that is located above the gum line once it has been cemented in place. Choosing the right material for a dental crown is necessary. The choice often depends on the tooth’s location, the patient’s preference, the dentist’s recommendation, and cost considerations.
Exploring Crown Materials
|Porcelain||– Natural appearance – Resistant to staining||– Less durable than metal – Can chip or break|
|Metal||– Very durable – Requires less tooth removal – Long-lasting||– Metallic colour – Could be visible in the mouth|
|Ceramic||– Blends well with natural tooth colour – Suitable for those with metal allergies||– Not as strong as porcelain-fused-to-metal|
|Porcelain-fused-to-metal||– Strong and durable – Natural appearance||– Can wear down opposing teeth – Metal can show through over time|
Why Would I Need a Dental Crown?Dental crowns serve multiple purposes, from restoring the function of a damaged tooth to enhancing the overall aesthetics of one’s smile. While crowns are versatile, there are specific situations where they come highly recommended by dentists.
Reasons for Getting a Crown
|Fractured Teeth||When a tooth is cracked or broken, a crown can hold it together, preventing further damage and restoring its function.|
|After a Root Canal||After removing the pulp and the tooth’s internal cleaning, a crown is often placed to protect the now-weakened tooth and restore its strength.|
|Large Fillings||If a tooth has a filling that takes up a significant portion of its structure, a crown could be needed to prevent fractures or further decay.|
|Cosmetic Enhancement||Crowns can improve the appearance of misshapen, discoloured, or unsightly teeth, providing a uniform and pleasing look.|
What is the Difference Between a Crown and a Filling?Crowns and fillings restore teeth, but they’re used for different reasons and have distinct features. Below is a quick comparison:
Crown vs. Filling
|Purpose||Used to cover and protect a damaged or weakened tooth entirely. Ideal for significant decay, cracks, or aesthetic concerns.||Used to fill a cavity after removing decay. Best for smaller areas of damage or decay.|
|Duration||The process generally requires two visits: one for tooth preparation and impression taking and a second to fit the custom-made crown.||Often completed in a single visit, where decay is removed, and the cavity is filled.|
|Material||Made from porcelain, metal, ceramic, or porcelain-fused-to-metal.||Made from amalgam (silver), composite (tooth-coloured), ceramic, or gold.|
|Longevity||Crowns generally last 5-15 years or more, depending on material and care.||Fillings can last anywhere from 5 to 15 years or more, with composite fillings typically having a shorter lifespan than amalgam fillings.|
How Long Does Dental Crowns Procedure Take?Getting a dental crown involves a series of steps. While the exact timing can vary based on individual circumstances and the dentist’s specific procedures, here’s a general overview of what to expect:
Crown Procedure Timeline
|Consultation||Discussion with the dentist to determine the need and type of crown. This also involves a dental examination and sometimes X-rays.||30 minutes to 1 hour.|
|Tooth Preparation||The tooth is reshaped to fit the crown. This could include removing decay or old fillings.||30 minutes to 1 hour.|
|Impression||An impression or mold of the prepared tooth is taken. This can be a physical mould or a digital scan.||15 to 30 minutes.|
|Crown Placement||The final crown is fitted, adjusted if necessary, and then cemented in place.||30 minutes to 1 hour.|
Does Getting a Crown Hurt?Considering a dental crown and worried about pain? The following is a quick overview: Local Anesthesia: The area is numbed before the procedure, so you shouldn’t feel pain, just slight pressure. During the Procedure: With anesthesia in effect, the process is typically painless, though some pressure or vibration could be felt. Post-Procedure Sensitivity: Some sensitivity, especially to temperature, is common afterward. Managing Sensitivity:
- Use over-the-counter pain relievers.
- Opt for toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth.
- Avoid extreme temperatures in food and drink for a few days.
- Brush and floss gently.
How Much Does a Dental Crown Cost?The cost of dental crowns can vary based on several factors. Below is a breakdown to help you understand what could influence the price:
Crown Cost Breakdown
|Material||Type of crown material used. Porcelain, metal, ceramic, and hybrids have varying costs.||$500 – $3,000 depending on the material.|
|Complexity of Procedure||Simpler procedures will cost less than complex ones, requiring more time or specialized techniques.||Varies; $800 – $2,000 typically.|
|Region/Dentist||Dental procedures often cost more in urban areas or with more experienced dentists.||Varies; $500 – $2,500 by region.|
|Additional Treatments||Sometimes, other treatments like root canals or gum therapy are needed before the crown.||Varies; $200 – $1,500 per treatment.|
What are the Potential Risks or Complications?While dental crowns are generally safe and effective, like any procedure, they come with potential complications. Here’s a breakdown:
Allergic ReactionsSome individuals can react to materials in the crown, such as certain metals. Ensure your dentist is aware of any allergies beforehand.
Crown MisfitImproper fitting can cause discomfort or misalignment. Regular check-ups and adjustments as needed.
Gum IssuesGums can become inflamed or recede around a crown if not fitted properly. Proper oral hygiene and regular dental cleanings.
Temporary vs. Permanent CrownsDental crowns typically involve a two-step process: a temporary crown and a permanent one. Understanding the differences can help set expectations:
Temporary vs. Permanent Crowns
|Aspect||Temporary Crown||Permanent Crown|
|Duration||Short-term; typically a few days to a few weeks.||Long-term; can last many years with proper care.|
|Purpose||Protects the tooth and maintains space while the permanent crown is crafted.||Provides final, durable protection and restoration.|
|Material||Often made of acrylic-based material or stainless steel.||Made of porcelain, metal, ceramic, or a combination.|
|Benefits||Immediate protection. Easily removable.||Durable, long-lasting, and closely matches natural teeth.|
|Drawbacks||Less durable. It will not fit as perfectly as a permanent crown.||Requires a longer fitting process and is more expensive.|
Ready for the Next Step With “Dentists Near Me“Dental crowns serve a significant purpose in the realm of oral care. By now, you should better grasp their importance, benefits, and the intricacies involved. However, every individual’s dental needs are unique. While this guide provides general insights, the optimal advice tailored to your situation comes from your dentist. If you’re searching for a top-tier dental clinic that aligns with your needs, reach out to Westgate Dental Centre. We’re here to provide personalized guidance for your oral well-being.
Frequently Asked Questions
Once you have a dental crown in place, it’s essential to know how to care for it to ensure its longevity. Following the right guidelines can make all the difference:
Crown Care Recommendations
- Daily Cleaning
Brush uses a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste twice daily. Floss gently around the crown to prevent plaque buildup. Consider using a water flosser for extra cleaning.
- Foods to Avoid
Be cautious with hard or sticky foods like nuts, candies, or ice. They could dislodge or damage the crown. Avoid excessive hot or cold temperatures that could cause sensitivity.
- Regular Check-ups
Visit your dentist every six months (or as recommended) to ensure the crown is in good condition and to address any potential issues early.
Dental crowns are built to last, but how long can you expect yours to serve its purpose? The answer varies depending on several factors.
Factors Affecting Crown Longevity
- Oral Hygiene
Good daily cleaning habits can extend the life of a crown. Poor hygiene can lead to gum disease or decay at the base of the crown, compromising its stability.
- Material of Crown
Different materials have varied lifespans. For instance, metal crowns could last longer than composite ones, but could not be as aesthetically pleasing.
- Regular Dental Visits
Frequent check-ups ensure that any issues with the crown are spotted and rectified early, potentially preventing premature replacement or failure.
No. A dental crown cannot get cavities because it is made from materials like porcelain, ceramic, or metal that are not susceptible to decay. However, the natural tooth underlying the crown can still experience decay, especially at the margin where the crown meets the tooth. Cavities can develop if bacteria and food particles accumulate in this area and must be regularly cleaned through proper dental hygiene.
If your crown comes off:
- Retrieve the Crown: Carefully remove it from your mouth to prevent swallowing.
- Rinse the Crown: Use water to clean it gently.
- Contact Your Dentist: Schedule an appointment as soon as possible.
- Temporary Fix: Use over-the-counter dental cement to reattach temporarily. Avoid super glue.
- Eat Carefully: Avoid hard or sticky foods and don’t chew on the affected side.
- Maintain Hygiene: Brush gently and consider saltwater rinses.