Caps are placed over damaged teeth to restore their appearance. A crown serves as a means of protecting, covering, and reshaping your teeth after fillings cannot satisfy your needs. Materials used in the manufacture of dental crowns include metals, porcelain, resin, and ceramics. Providing they are maintained regularly with good oral hygiene, they usually do not require any special care.
Crowns: What are they?
The enamel on your teeth can deteriorate over time. A variety of factors can cause this, including tooth decay, accidents, or simply regular use. Consequently, your teeth might appear to be crooked or short. An oral crown involves attaching a tooth-shaped cap to your tooth. A physical analogy would be a snug-fitting hat for your tooth. Developing a crown will improve the appearance, strength, and function of the tooth.
You can see the visible portion of the tooth under the dental crown, which is cemented into place on your tooth.
What are the reasons for needing a crown?
The following reasons may lead to the need for a dental crown:
- Keeping a tooth together if it is cracked or to protect it from breaking if it is weak (possibly due to decay).
- Restorative dentistry involves repairing broken or badly worn teeth.
- With a big filling and not much tooth remaining, this procedure covers and supports the tooth.
- A dental bridge is held in position with a dental clasp.
- Restoring or concealing the appearance of a discolored or misshapen tooth.
- Dental implants are covered with dentures.
- A root canal-treated tooth is covered with a dental crown.
How are onlays and 3/4 crowns different?
On your teeth, you can use various types of crowns. A dental crown with an onlay, or a 3/4 crown as it’s also known, does not cover as much tooth like a traditional dental crown. Your whole tooth will be covered by a traditional crown. When you have a strong tooth structure, an onlay or a 3/4 crown may be appropriate. In comparison to a full-coverage crown, it’s considered more conservative. This procedure involves removing the affected area of the tooth and reshaping it so that it can receive a crown.
What is the material used for dental crowns?
Many different materials can be used to make permanent crowns. Among them are:
- Metal: Metals such as gold, palladium, nickel, and chrome can be used in dental crowns. With a metal crown, your tooth is less likely to chip or break, lasts much longer regarding wear, and only a small amount of tooth tissue needs to be removed. These crowns are also more resistant to biting forces. The main disadvantage of these crowns is the metallic color. An out-of-sight molar can be restored with a metal crown.
- Composite material: Dental crowns made from composite material are often matched to the adjacent teeth’s color. Composite crowns will appear more natural in color. Under the porcelain cap, however, some of the metal is visible as a dark line. Besides chipping or breaking porcelain portions of the crown, the crown can also wear down the teeth opposite it. As your mouth closes, your crowns on top and bottom come into contact with other teeth which causes wear to those teeth. Front or back teeth can be fitted with porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns.
- All-resin crowns: Resin crowns are usually more affordable than other types. In contrast, porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns wear down and are more prone to breakage over time.
- Ceramic pressed crowns: They have an inner core made of ceramic. All-ceramic dental crowns are made using ceramic crowns that have been pressed instead of metal linings. The best matches for natural color are achieved with porcelain caps on pressed ceramic crowns. With porcelain caps on pressed ceramic crowns, it is possible to achieve the most natural color match. Additionally, they are more durable than an all-ceramic crown.
How can dental crowns cause problems?
Over time, your crown may develop a number of issues, including:
- Feelings of discomfort: After the anesthesia wears off, it is possible that a new crown will be sensitive. You may experience some heat and cold sensitivity if the crowned tooth still contains a nerve. If you have sensitive teeth, your dentist may recommend brushing them with a toothpaste that is designed for sensitive teeth. An overly high crown is usually responsible for causing pain or sensitivity when you bite down. Speak to your dentist about this. It’s a simple fix.
- Broken crowns: Some porcelain crowns are prone to chipping. If there is a small chip, the crown can be repaired and positioned in your mouth. A large chip or many chips may necessitate replacing the dental crown.
- Crowns that are loosened: There are instances where the cement holding the crown in place can come undone. A loose crown not only allows bacteria to enter and cause decay on the remaining tooth but also has the effect of allowing the crown to become loose. Please contact your dentist right away if you notice your crown is loose.
- Reaction to metal: Crowns made of a mixture of metals are often used to make dental crowns. Dental crowns may contain metals or porcelain that can cause an allergic reaction. Although rare, it can happen.
- Gum line next to crowned tooth area: Next to your crowned tooth you may notice a dark line. There’s nothing to be alarmed about – particularly if your porcelain is fused to metal. All that you are seeing is the metal of the crown on top.
Does a dental crown last long?
Between five and fifteen years is the average lifespan of a dental crown. How long a crown lasts can be determined by the degree of wear and tear, oral hygiene practices, and the personal habits related to your mouth. For example, you may want to consider:
- Your teeth are clenched or ground.
- Ice is being chewed.
- Fingernails being bitten.
- When opening packages, use your teeth.
Is there any special care required for a crowned tooth?
No special care is required for crowned teeth. Even so, it is still important to protect the underlying tooth from decay or gum disease. As a result, good oral hygiene should never be ignored. Brushing and flossing your teeth twice a day – especially around the crown area at the point where the gum meets your tooth – are effective ways to ensure good oral health. Do not chew ice or popcorn hulls with porcelain crowns to avoid cracking the porcelain.