A dental crown is a common fixed prosthetic restoration used in restorative and cosmetic dentistry. Commonly referred to as a ‘cap’, a crown will fit right over a prepared tooth. They fully encase the tooth, essentially becoming the new outer layer of that tooth, and will sit just above the gum line. They are fabricated in a dental lab from impressions of your teeth to ensure a custom fit. They are permanently cemented into place and will require the same care as your natural teeth.
Common Uses for a Dental Crown
There are several reasons why your dentist may suggest placing a dental crown. Wooddell & Passaro Dental Group, a dental practice located near Crofton MD, will often recommend a dental crown to their patients for the following purposes.
Crowns are used as a restorative dental treatment to protect a tooth. It is a common practice to place a crown over a tooth that has just received a root canal. Sometimes Drs. Wooddell and Passaro may recommend using a cap to support a tooth after a large filling. In both of these instances, the tooth will become weaker and a dental crown will add strength, protecting it from further damage.
For teeth that have been damaged, chipped or cracked, a tooth crown is an effective solution. It will restore the appearance and the alignment of the tooth as well as add strength to prevent future damage. This would be an effective alternative to extracting the tooth since it is always better to preserve the natural tooth if possible.
Dental crowns can also be used in combination with other dental restorations. They are typically placed on the anchor teeth for patients receiving a dental bridge. A bridge will put significant pressure on the anchor teeth and a crown will strengthen them. They are also used as the tooth replacement when a patient has a dental implant placed.
Not many people realize that a crown can be used for cosmetic purposes too. With advances in dental technology, dental crowns look just like your natural teeth and will blend in with the rest of your smile. Since they encase the entire tooth, they have the ability to hide many imperfections.
Some patients have discolored or stained teeth and a teeth whitening treatment did not fix the issue. Dental crowns are a great alternative to cover up your discolored teeth, instantly brightening them. They are also often used to close the gap between teeth and also to correct misshapen or crooked teeth. Crowns are a cost effective solution when a patient is unhappy with the appearance of their smile but not ready to commit to more expensive cosmetic treatments such as porcelain veneers.
The Crown Process
To receive a dental crown, you will need to make at least two trips to our dental practice located near Crofton, MD. At your first appointment, the teeth receiving the crown will need to be prepared. This involves removing the old crown or filling and getting rid of the decay or damage. Then using a dental drill, they will gently remove some of the outer surface of the tooth to create room for the tooth cap. Dental impressions will be taken that will be used by the dental lab technician to fabricate your new crown. A temporary crown will be place until your new one is ready.
At your next appointment, the temporary crown will be removed and the new one tried on to ensure proper fit. Once you are satisfied with the look and fit, the dental crown will be permanently bonded to the tooth and gently polished.