Dental Crown procedure
When the damage to a tooth exceeds what a dental filling can repair, most likely your dentist will then recommend a dental crown to cover, protect, and restore the shape and the function of the tooth. Even though having a crown placed might sound uncomfortable, it is a quite common, frequent used, and safe procedure that will make your weakened tooth stronger, lasting much longer, and returning your smile to its healthy appearance.
A Few Reasons Why You Might Need a Dental Crown
After an evaluation and an examination, your dentist may recommend a dental crown for these reasons:
- To protect a decayed or damaged tooth.
- To cover a stained, discolored, or misshapen tooth.
- To stabilize a tooth currently restored with a dental filling.
- To support and strengthen a dental bridge.
- To protect a tooth that has had a root canal procedure.
- To finish a new dental implant restoration.
The Procedure for a Dental Crown Application
A common dental crown procedure usually will take two appointments. You may also be curious if there is any discomfort with the procedure. While you could experience some sensitivity, your dentist might administer a local anesthetic, like having a dental filling placed.
During the first appointment your dentist will prepare the tooth for the crown. They will capture X-rays of the tooth and the surrounding supporting bone and then remove some surface enamel of the tooth. The amount of enamel reduction depends on the type of crown material being used. A metal crown will need less of the tooth removed than a porcelain crown. After an evaluation, you may benefit from a root canal if there is any risk of infection or tooth decay.
Once the tooth has been reduced in size and prepped, your dentist will then make an impression of the tooth. They will also take an impression of your teeth, so the new crown will fit properly with your bite alignment. This impression is then sent to a dental lab to custom fabricate your crown, which usually takes a couple of weeks. Your dentist will place a temporary crown on the tooth to protect it until the permanent crown is completed.
At your second appointment it is time to finish the dental crown restoration and have the permanent crown placed. Your dentist will first remove the temporary crown. Then they will exam and approve the fit, color, and shape of your new crown, and finally cement it in place. A local anesthetic might be used for your comfortable.
Proper Care for Your Dental Crown
After your new dental crown is placed and it feels comfortable, the best method of care is to continue to exercise proper daily oral care and treat your new crown as you would correctly treat any other tooth. The natural tooth under your crown still needs constant protection from gum disease. Brush twice a day with a soft-bristle toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste, and floss your teeth every day, including the area between your crown and surrounding teeth. Dental crowns are a dental restoration and not a natural tooth, so they can still crack, chip, and wear. Simply avoid biting hard objects to prevent any chipping or cracking of your new dental crown.