Crowns

When you look in the mirror, you might not feel happy with your smile if there is a tooth that is broken or damaged. A tooth that needs a crown may also cause you pain or become infected. If the dentist suggests a crown, take your time to explore the costs of this prosthetic device. If you do choose this procedure, you should schedule it as soon as possible because a crown can solve many potential problems that could develop in a broken tooth. Keep in mind that once the crown is cemented into place, only a dentist will able to remove it.


Why you might need a crown

Here are possible reasons you might need a crown:

  • A tooth is worn down, broken, or weak.
  • The dentist already tried to fill this tooth with other treatment methods.
  • dental implant must be covered.
  • The dentist needs to anchor a dental bridge.
  • A root canal has been performed on this tooth.
  • The tooth is misshapen or badly discoloured.
  • A cosmetic adjustment is desired. 
  • There is such a large cavity that a filling will not do the job.
  • There is a crack in the tooth.

What is a Crown?

The top of a tooth is covered with enamel. If this protective material breaks down over time, then a tooth can become damaged. If the dentist believes a crown is indicated, they will create a cap that fits precisely over the tooth. This technique aims to prevent the tooth from further breaks and decay, and improve the tooth in terms of its size, strength, and appearance.


What to expect

There will be at least two appointments involved, unless the dentist has the technology to do the crown on the same day.


The first appointment

  • The dentist will usually anaesthetise the tooth area. 
  • The dentist will prepare the surfaces of the tooth, removing any old filling material, or weak broken down tooth structure.
  • The dentist will take an impression of this part of your mouth, either digitally or with a traditional, putty-like substance.
  • If the crown cannot be made on the same day, a temporary cap will be applied to cover the tooth.

The second appointment

  • The dentist will remove the temporary cap and check your tooth.
  • The dentist will then cement the crown into place.

Other options to discuss with your dentist

There are other options to discuss with your dentist if you don't wish to save this tooth.

  • Your doctor can create a bridge, but there must be a nearby tooth strong enough to anchor it.
  • You can have a tooth extraction and get a dental implant.

Whether to choose a crown, a bridge, or an implant is a big decision. It helps to think of bridges as prosthetic devices that effectively replace teeth. When you obtain a bridge, it looks so real that it restores the natural look to your smile.


Potential discomfort

The process for applying a crown is similar to getting a filling. You will receive an oral injection to numb the targeted area of the mouth and the dentist will use a drill to file down the tooth. Any signs of tooth decay must be removed before preparing the base to support the cap. Once a newly-made crown is cemented into its proper place, it should make your tooth look and feel natural again.


Additional considerations

When you choose to get a crown, the dentist will be replacing the damaged tooth structure with a prosthetic device. Each crown has the potential to last for the rest of your life, and evidence shows that around 90% of crowns are still there 10 years after placement. However, it could also become damaged. Use these tips to maintain good oral health and preserve the longevity of the crown: 

  • Perform regular brushing twice a day and floss at least once a day.
  • Keep your regular appointments for dental check-ups and cleans.
  • Avoid chewing foods that are hard or sticky, such as ice and candy.
  • Don't put objects in your mouth or chew on objects. 

Potential complications

Scheduling a crown application is a big investment, and dentists only usually suggest crowns for teeth which are already in a bad way. Some complications can occur when you get a crown:

  • The nerve inside the tooth could require treatment over time.
  • A porcelain crown could become chipped, loose, or fall out.
  • Some patients experience an allergic reaction to the metal alloy used in the crown.

At National Dental Care, your oral health is important to us. Please discuss all questions with your dentist before scheduling an appointment for a crown. We work hard to ensure your comfort throughout the process and also offer same-day crowns!

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