Generally, crowns will last for 10 years or even longer. Yet, this does depend on how well you look after your new restoration. Dentists highly recommend regular checkups and professional cleanings at your dentist’s dental office.
Dental crowns are sometimes called caps. This is because they cap or completely cover up teeth right down to the gum line so that nothing of the original tooth is visible. Many people will have at least one dental crown during their lives.
Over the past few years, the materials and technology used to make dental crowns have improved considerably. Nowadays the most modern crowns will blend in just about invisibly with existing teeth. This creates an appearance that can often look even better than a person’s original and natural teeth.
What Exactly Is a Dental Crown?
A dental crown is designed to cover up a tooth that is badly damaged where much of its original structure has been lost. Sometimes dental crowns are used to cosmetically improve the appearance of a tooth and to create a perfect smile.
Every dental crown made has been carefully designed to closely replicate the size and shape of a natural tooth. Dentists only use the finest quality porcelains that have the same kind of translucency and liveliness found in a real tooth.
Once the crown is in place, structure and strength will have been restored. You will be able to smile with complete confidence and you can bite and chew without fear of your tooth crumbling or cracking.
When Would I Need a Dental Crown?
Your dentist may suggest you have a crown if you have a tooth that has a particularly large filling. This can be perhaps due to significant tooth decay and where it has become weakened due to loss of structure.
If you leave that tooth with just a filling, there is a real risk that the tooth could crack or fracture when you bite or chew food. Your dentist may also suggest you have a crown if you have a tooth that has become broken or fractured, or where you have received root canal therapy.
Dental crowns can also be used to restore teeth that are badly worn down or to cover up a tooth that is misshapen or too small, as well as one that is severely discolored. Crowns are also used to hold dental bridges in place and can cover up dental implants.
What Is the Procedure for Having a Crown?
If you do need a crown, your dentist will explain the procedure in a lot more detail. Including why this treatment is necessary and which crown would best suit your needs. Your tooth will need to be prepared by shaping it and removing all damaged portions. This part of the treatment is carried out under local anesthetic to ensure you are completely comfortable at all times. Conventional crowns are made in a dental laboratory and the next step of the process is to take a detailed impression of your newly prepared tooth.
The impression is then sent to the dental laboratory with the prescription and will be handcrafted to the exact specifications. This normally takes at least a week or two, during which time your tooth will be protected with a temporary crown.
You will need to take a bit more care while wearing a temporary crown as it’s best to avoid very hard or sticky foods that could loosen or break a crown. When you return to have your permanent crown fitted, your dentist will remove the temporary crown before placing in your new restoration.
This is to make sure the fit and appearance are absolutely perfect. Once you are satisfied, the crown is cemented permanently in place.
Crowns made in a dental laboratory can be fabricated from metal alloys that are polished to a high sheen. They are suitable for repairing back teeth where there is very little room. Your dentist can also provide you with metal alloy crowns that are covered up with lifelike porcelain and which creates a highly aesthetic look.
Top quality crowns made entirely from porcelain are best suitable for cosmetic smile makeovers. They work great for anyone who wants their smile to look it's very best. The nice thing about all ceramic crowns is the way the light is transmitted right through the crown. Whereas with a crown that has a metal substructure, the light is unable to pass all the way through.
These crowns still look extremely good, but it’s more difficult to replicate the natural appearance of a real tooth. Dentists also have another option which is to have a crown made while you wait.
One Visit Crowns
Dentists like to be able to offer their patients the very latest and most advanced technology. This is why they have an on-site milling machine that is capable of producing precision made ceramic crowns while you wait.
These crowns are made entirely from porcelain and are extremely high quality and long-lasting. There are several advantages in choosing this option as there is no need to take a dental impression prior to making this type of crown.
Instead, the tooth is digitally scanned and this information is transmitted to a computer. Using specialized software, your dentist will design your crown and the design is then sent to their milling machine. This will mill your crown from a solid block of tooth-colored porcelain, a process that only takes a few minutes to complete. Once the crown has been milled, it has to be hand finished and is carefully checked to make sure it is perfect.
Next, it can be tried in your mouth and fitted in place. This means there is no need for a second appointment. This will save you time and there will be no need to have a temporary crown.
These crowns are made using the very latest CADCAM technology and in no way compromise on quality. They may not be suitable for every occasion, but if your dentists feel this treatment is suitable then it’s definitely something he/she will suggest for you.
How Long Will a Crown Last?
Generally, crowns will last for 10 years or even longer. Yet, this does depend on how well you look after your new restoration. Dentists highly recommend regular checkups and professional cleanings at your dentist’s dental office. Regularly maintaining your crown and making sure you have great oral hygiene at home will help prolong its life. It’s also important to avoid using your teeth to open packets or generally using them as tools, as this could chip your natural teeth and your crown.