Protect and Strengthen Teeth with Dental Crowns

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Tooth decay can weaken and deteriorate your teeth, and extensive decay may not be adequately addressed with a filling alone. In these cases, dental crowns can help to protect and preserve teeth that have been affected by large cavities.

Dental crowns can be made of any number of materials – metal, porcelain fused to metal, composites – depending on the patient’s needs and aesthetic preferences. Your dentist will meet with you for an initial evaluation to gather all of the information needed to design your crown. Decayed material is removed from your tooth, which is then “prepped” for crown placement by removing a thin layer of enamel.

Your dentist will forward the design specifications to a dental lab, which is tasked with crafting the crown. When the crown is ready to be placed, the patient returns to the office to have it bonded to the tooth. Before it is permanently placed, the crown’s design can further be adjusted according to the patient’s desires. However, after the crown is bonded to the tooth, it cannot be altered. Therefore, be sure that you are satisfied with the crown’s appearance before that point.

Dental crowns can be used in other circumstances beyond restoring a tooth affected by decay. A dental crown may also be placed on a tooth following a root canal, which leaves the tooth susceptible to breakage without some additional form of protection. A crown can also be used primarily for aesthetic purposes.

If you take good care of a dental crown, it can last for many years. Maintain a thorough oral hygiene routine of twice-daily brushing and daily flossing, and keep sweet treats to a minimum. You will get instructions on how to care for your dental crown so that it can continue to protect your tooth.

Dental crowns can help to protect and strengthen your teeth in a number of circumstances. Might you benefit from this treatment? Contact Anderson Dentistry at either of our convenient locations to schedule an evaluation.

Do dental crowns require special care?

Senior woman brushing teeth

Sometimes restorations are necessary to protect teeth from damage and prevent tooth loss. A dental crown is a special restoration that is used to cover an entire tooth. Unlike a filling, which only fills in small depressions caused by a cavity, a crown is like a cap. These restorations are permanently bonded to teeth with a cement-like compound so that patients can enjoy a durable restoration with a long lifespan. Taking care of dental crowns is very similar to caring for natural teeth. Patients will brush and floss their teeth, including crowns, as normal and receive routine cleanings and checkups with their dentist.

So what is a crown exactly?

A dental crown is a tooth-shaped restoration that covers the entire tooth structure above the gum line. Since these restorations are made to fit over a specific tooth, they are custom made by technicians in a dental laboratory. Patients have options on which materials are used to fabricate a crown. Popular options are metal alloys like gold and silver (for their durability) and porcelain or porcelain fused to metal (for their natural looking appearance). Once placed, a crown will perfectly fit between teeth and restore a damaged tooth to a healthy size and shape.

Why are dental crowns needed?

Crowns may be needed for a number of reasons. Untreated tooth decay may require the use of a crown to repair a badly damaged tooth. If a cavity has reached the innermost structures of a tooth and significantly weakened tooth enamel, a crown can protect the tooth from future damage while making biting and chewing more comfortable. Crowns are also necessary when a dental injury such as a tooth fracture has occurred. Dental crowns allow patients to retain their natural tooth, even if it is damaged, thus preventing the need for extraction.

Our practice provides a number of general and restorative dentistry services including the placement of fillings and crowns. Call us today to reserve an appointment with our friendly and skilled dental team.

When is a dental crown recommended?

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Since tooth decay and tooth damage are extremely common, most people will require at least one type of dental restoration in their lifetime. Restorative dentistry allows a patient to keep as much of their biological tooth as possible even if it is damaged by decay or significantly worn down. Common restorations provided by our dentist include fillings and crowns. Fillings are used to restore small areas of tooth decay while dental crowns cover an entire tooth.

What is a crown exactly?

A dental crown is a tooth-shaped restoration that is placed over the tooth like a cap. A crown is made in a dental laboratory to precise measurements determined by our dentist. Because crowns are custom made, they will properly restore a damaged tooth’s size and shape. In addition to restoring tooth shape and size, crowns also preserve natural teeth from further damage.

Why would a patient need a dental crown?

The placement of a crown may be required for a few different reasons. Extensive tooth decay that has infected the interior structures of teeth often requires a crown. In other cases, a cracked tooth or a tooth that has significant wear may need a dental crown to restore a patient’s occlusion (bite). A crown is a conservative option in dentistry that can prevent the need for extraction.

Do crowns look natural?

Dental crowns can be crafted from a variety of materials. In the past, the most common material used was metal alloys. While these materials are still used today, patients have more natural looking options. For example, all porcelain or porcelain fused to metal crowns provide a tooth-colored restoration that is virtually undetectable to others. Porcelain comes in different shades of white and reflects light like biological teeth do. These types of crowns are a great option for more visible teeth at the front of the mouth. Our dentist will help you determine which material(s) are best for your unique situation.

If you are in need of a dental restoration, call our friendly team today to reserve your appointment.

Can Dental Crowns Improve the Appearance of Natural Teeth?

Keeping all of your biological teeth for your lifetime is a goal worth working toward. There are many things that can make that goal seem impossible, but dental crowns can provide a means to save teeth that might otherwise be lost. And for teeth that are unattractive due to stains, chips, or extensive decay, dental crowns come in different sizes for different applications and can turn imperfection into beautiful in a couple of dental appointments.

Your dentist will determine what type of restorative treatment is best; to repair a tooth already afflicted with decay, a dental onlay may be the best option. For a broken tooth, a full crown is usually recommended. Other conditions where a crown can enhance dental problems include:

…dental crowns come in different sizes for different applications and can turn imperfection into beautiful in a couple of dental appointments.

Tooth loss – Trauma, infection or extensive decay can result in the loss of one or more teeth. Depending on your situation, there are a couple of options to restore tooth loss. The patient can opt for a partial or complete bridge or denture. When selecting a fixed (permanent) prosthetic, quite often the abutment teeth will receive dental crowns to hold the unit in place.

For patients who wish to restore tooth loss to as close to natural as possible, one or more dental implants may be recommended. An implant is a small screw like device made from titanium that is surgically embedded in the gum where tooth loss has occurred. Once healed, the implant is covered with a crown that has been made to match surrounding teeth in size, shape and color. The crown is permanently cemented in place with the implant providing stability to feel and look like a biological tooth.

Root Canal – When the nerve of a tooth has been damaged, the need to remove the contents of the tooth’s roots becomes imperative to prevent infection and tooth loss. The dentist will open the tooth to gain access to the root canals. Once cleaned out, the tooth must be sealed. In some instances, sealing the tooth may be completed with composite resin. But in most cases, a dental crown is placed to seal the tooth.

Keeping biological teeth in place should be a goal for everyone; however, when the situation calls for a much needed repair, a dental crown is an option that provides functionality and aesthetics that will last for a very long time.

Tooth Restorations: How dental crowns can help

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Our teeth can undergo some rough treatment in our daily lives. From chewing on the end of a pencil, to receiving a blow on the mouth; even biting down hard on a candy, a tooth can suffer damage. This damage could be a crack somewhere along the tooth’s enamel; or it could be a chip, where part of the enamel is broken off.

Dental crowns have become a popular method of preserving a tooth that has become damaged, and help to keep up the appearance of a natural, healthy smile.

Where the tooth cannot be adequately or safely repaired, or if further damage is likely, then the dentist may use dental crowns as a treatment. Dental crowns work by capping the tooth, enveloping the existing tooth’s structure in an artificial shell made of porcelain.

Some teeth might already have a filling present, and a break in the tooth could substantially weaken the tooth further, increasing the likelihood of further damage. Teeth that have multiple fillings, and those teeth which undergo root canal treatments are also likely to be capped with a dental crown. This is because multiple fillings in a single tooth can substantially weaken the tooth enough where further filling is not advised.

The porcelain used in dental crowns is a durable, semi-translucent material which helps to deliver a natural appearance by allowing light to be reflected off the tooth’s surface. The porcelain can also be shaped and shaded to provide a close match to natural teeth, aiding in the perception of a natural smile.

To prepare a tooth for a dental crown, the dentist removes a small amount of tooth enamel. Dental impressions are then taken and the crown manufactured in a dental laboratory. Once returned, the dentist cements the crown into place where it provides the necessary strength and support to the underlying remnants of the original tooth and delivers a natural appearance with no hindrance to the function or appearance of the teeth or smile.

To learn more about the benefits of dental crowns, contact our team at Anderson Dentistry. Call 817-485-2111 to schedule your visit.