DENTAL CROWN: ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW
A dental crown which is also called a dental cap is a dental restoration that is fitted over a tooth or implant so that it encircles a prepared tooth and gives it the shape and strength of a natural tooth.
Why would you need a crown?
A dental crown is important for the following reasons:
- It can be used in the repair of a tooth that is broken or decayed, or one that has been weakened by a large cavity.
- A dental crown improves the aesthetic appearance of your teeth, especially if you have a case of discoloured filling.
- A finely fitted dental crown can keep a bridge or denture in the proper place and can be used to firmly cover what tooth is left after undergoing a root filling.
Read on to learn more of the special benefits of a dental crown, and why you might need one.
What materials are crowns made from?
Dental crowns can be produced from various materials; from porcelain and glasses to crowns made from gold-alloys. As dental technology improves, newer materials are being employed in making crowns. Some of the best popular dental crown options include:
- Porcelain bonded to precious metal:
This is the most popular material in the making of dental crowns. In this mode of crown production, the metal base first is produced, before porcelain is laid carefully over the base.
Some dental crowns are made only from porcelain, and are quite popular due to the natural appearance of these crowns. These types of crowns are used mostly to restore front teeth, but they do not possess the strength of the more popular bonded crowns.
This material is fairly modern in the production of strong, durable dental crowns. The all-ceramic crown offers you a crown option that is made without any metal but still possesses the compact strength of a bonded crown, and the natural look of porcelain crowns. Both these qualities heighten the popularity of this type of dental crown, and allows it to be used without any trouble in all areas of the mouth.
Glass dental crowns are barely distinguishable from a natural tooth, and so give you natural-looking crowns that are suitable to fit in any part of your mouth.
- Gold-alloy crowns:
Among dental filling materials, gold is notable for being the oldest. Modern dental technology has enabled certain alloys to be used with gold to increase the strength of the dental crown produced with this material. Gold-alloy crowns often appear in colours of silver or gold, and are usually not so easy to wear, due to the extra strength provided by the alloys.
What are the steps involved in making a crown?
- An experienced dentist will have your tooth prepared first so that its shape can easily fit the dental crown to be produced. This tooth shaping usually will involve taking away an outer layer of the tooth surface, identical to the thickness of the dental crown, and leaving a strong inner core within the tooth.
- After shaping, comes moulding; an impression is cast from the prepared tooth and another tooth from the opposite jaw to enable the dentist get an idea of how you bite your food.
- A dental technician will collect the tooth impressions, and all other information, including what colour or shade of dental crown to be produced, and any essential information regarding your tooth or chewing.
What is a post crown?
A post crown refers to a post set into the prepared tooth before the crown is placed to cover the tooth. A post usually is essential in cases of root-filled teeth, to keep the crown firmly in place, and give it added strength. In inserting a post into a tooth, the outer tooth surface might need to be taken off down to the level of the gum.
What are the materials used in making a post?
Prefabricated stainless steel is a popular material used in making posts. This type of post gives the dentist an easy option of fitting the post directly into the root canal of the tooth.
An alternative involves the making of special posts in the laboratory by dental technicians, meant to fit without any trouble to the shape of the prepared root canal. This type of post usually is inserted and cemented into proper position by the dentist, before attachment of the dental crown can subsequently take place.
What other alternatives to post crowns are available to you for root-filled teeth?
If you are uncomfortable with inserting a post crown, an experienced dentist can offer you the option of having your teeth rebuilt with suitable filling material, especially in cases where the root-filled tooth is not entirely damaged. In this treatment, the core of the tooth will be prepared no different from a natural tooth, and impressions will be undertaken after by the dentist.
How is the crown fitted?
After the new crown is produced to a perfect fit and appearance, a special dental adhesive, also called dental cement, will be used in forming a firm seal to hold the dental crown in place.
How long does a crown treatment take?
Getting a dental crown fitted usually will require a minimum of two visits to the dentist. During your first dental appointment, the tooth will be prepared. Appropriate impressions of your teeth will be taken by your dentist and his team, along with accurate notes concerning the shade of your tooth. You will get a temporary dental crown fitted for the meantime, while a more permanent crown is being produced for you. The permanent dental crown will be fitted by your dentist on your second visit to the clinic. Space between appointments can last as long as a week or even two.
We recommend you make an appointment to visit our dental clinic in London today to get acquainted with our dental crown treatment options and get excellent recommendations from our dental experts.
Is tooth preparation painful?
Getting your tooth prepared for a dental crown is painless. A local anaesthetic will be administered by your dentist as tooth preparation commences, and you will find that the treatment is similar to a filling, without any major discomfort to you. A local anaesthetic might not be needed if the tooth being prepared does not have a nerve, and if a post crown is also being prepared to be inserted into the root canal to hold the dental crown.
Will the crown be noticeable after treatment?
A skilled and qualified dentist will ensure that the prepared dental crown fits appropriately onto the teeth, and matches both the shade and shape of your other teeth so that it is not noticeable. The crown will be made to look natural and easily fit without any issues in your mouth.
Will the crown feel different after treatment?
The new dental crown might make you feel uncomfortable for the first few days after treatment, as its shape will not be exact to that of the tooth that was crowned. As time passes, you should adjust though, and become more familiar with chewing and biting with the crown. But if you discover that you are still uncomfortable with the crown, you can get your dentist to have it properly adjusted for you.
What will a crown treatment cost you?
How much you get to pay for a dental crown treatment will vary, depending on what material the crown is made from, and what type of crown you request to be fitted for you. You can get in touch with us to provide you with a free quote today.
How can you care for your crown?
- Clean the crown regularly: treat the crown as you would your natural teeth by practising good dental hygiene. Understand that decay can still set into the tooth from the point where the crown is fitted to the tooth.
- Use fluoride toothpaste to brush your teeth before bed at night, and at least once at any other hour of the day.
- While brushing, ensure you make use of interdental' brushes or floss to properly clean the spaces between your teeth, to prevent decay from forming.
How long will your crown last?
Like the cost of your dental crown, the useful lifespan of your crown will vary, depending on several conditions, such as what type of dental crown you pick, what material is it made from, and also how well you take care of it. You can discuss this with your dentist before commencing treatment.
For more information, get in touch with our dental clinic here in Harley Street to discuss the suitable dental crown options we can provide you.