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What is a Dental Crown.
A crown is a tooth-shaped cover placed over a tooth that is badly damaged or decayed. Many people call it a cap.
Crowns may be placed for several reasons. Usually the tooth has been broken or severely damaged by decay. As a result, a filling can't replace enough of the tooth or make the tooth strong enough. A crown may hold together parts of a cracked tooth. It also can be used to hold a bridge in place. Crowns can be used to improve appearance as well. They may be placed to cover misshapen or badly discolored teeth.
Crowns can be made ahead of time (prefabricated) or made to order in a laboratory. Prefabricated crowns are made of plastic or stainless steel. They can be used on a temporary basis until a permanent crown is made.
Crowns can be all metal, porcelain fused to metal (PFM), or all ceramic. Metals include gold alloy, other alloys (palladium) or a base-metal alloy (nickel or chromium). The all-metal or PFM crowns are stronger and are better choices for back teeth than ceramic crowns. PFM and all-ceramic crowns are the same color as your natural teeth. They look just like normal teeth.
Crowns usually last at least seven years. In many cases they last much longer, up to 40 years or so.
UPDATED 11/1/2019. Once you figured that you need a dental crown, the next step is to figure out which dental crown type best fits your needs. This guide attempts to help you in making that decision.
A dental crown, also known as a “cap”, is a device specially designed and made in a lab to be used in restorative treatments. A crown can either cover a spoiled tooth or be fixed to an implant.
Dental crowns are key in permanent treatments as they are meant to function and look like a natural tooth.
Typically, before getting your permanent crown, you will be taken a mold. Then, your tooth will be reshaped and you will have to wear a temporary crown for just a few days until the final cap is permanently cemented (some offices offer same-day crowns with technologies such as CEREC, although some dentists claim the quality is not the same as those fabricated in a lab)
Dental crowns include: all-metal, ceramic fused to metal and all-ceramic crowns. Since a crown will play the role of a new tooth, it is crucial to consider some aspects that have to do with strength, aesthetics and adaptability of your gums and nearby teeth. Looking closer at the different types of crowns may help you decide which one makes the best choice for you.
Usually made of gold, copper and a mix of other metals, gold crowns don’t make a verpopular choice due to their color (we generally don’t like a gold tooth to show when we smile). However, you may need this type of crown for back teeth since they are particularly resistant and strong.
Gold crowns are less likely to break and are a good option if you don’t want so much of your tooth to be removed. As a noble metal, gold is less likely to cause allergic reactions to your gums. You may also find dentists recommending these types of crowns if you have bruxism, for example, due to their extended durability.
Desite the great strength of gold crowns, you may simply opt for porcelain fused-to-metal (PFM) crowns as they provide both good aesthetics and strength.
PFM crowns have provided excellent results for many years now. They are a mixture of all-metal and all-ceramic crowns: they are made of metal, but covered with a layer of porcelain, making the crown look like a natural tooth.
Like gold crowns, PFM crowns are strong. Unlike gold crowns, they give a natural look and that’s why they are good for both front and back teeth. However, in some cases, if your gums recede, for example, the metal under the porcelain can show a dark grey line on your gums. And again, if you suffer from bruxism, these crowns may not be recommendable as they may wear the teeth they bite against.
All-Porcelain crowns are made of all porcelain, looking a lot like a natural tooth due to their translucence. For that reason, they make one of the most attractive types of crowns.
You may opt for all-porcelain crowns for your front teeth if you want to give your smile a white and even look. The downside: porcelain is much more brittle and that means it might not make the best choice if you suffer from mild to severe bruxism. However, for front restorations, you may care more about aesthetics than strength.
Advances in dental crowns never stop. Zirconium is a type of metal also known for its strength and durability. It has become very popular for some time now and a great dental crown type to choose from. This choice has to do with the fact that the material is shaped and cut in a lot less time than traditional crowns (as it is lighter and thinner.) This helps you get a shorter treatment.
Also, no metals are involved so chances are that your tissues are not affected. However, this material is not as translucent as porcelain, so your smile may not be as perfect as you want.
The newest type of crown in dentistry today is known as E -Max. It is a type of all-ceramic crown made of lithium discilicate (which is also light and thin.)Although they might be more expensive than other crowns, the advantages of E-max crowns are that they look great in your mouth and are much stronger. They are a great choice both for front and back teeth.
Advances in dental crowns seem not to stop. Today, new materials give you more options for better and faster treatments. At the same time, traditional crowns have a long history and have proven to work well in most permanent treatments. Ultimately, the dental crown type you get will be up to you and your dentist to decide, based on your aesthetic and health needs. No matter what type of crown you and your dentist find best, always remember to take good care of your gums and teeth.
If you want to learn more about the different types of dental crowns available, or which would be the best choice for your specific needs, feel free to email or call Paphos Smile Art Studio Paphos Dental Clinic at:
Phone: +357 26222693
How the tooth is prepared for a dental crown?
If you need a crown, you may also need endodontic or root canal treatment on the tooth. Such treatment may be recommended if you have a lot of decay in the tooth. This increases the risk of infection or injury to the tooth's pulp. Not everyone who needs a crown will also need a root canal.
Before placing a crown, your dentist may need to build up a foundation to support it. A foundation is needed if large areas of the tooth are decayed, damaged or missing. If you are receiving the crown after root canal treatment, your dentist may insert a post-and-core foundation.
To place a crown, your dentist will file down the tooth to make room for the crown. If you are receiving an all-metal crown, less of the tooth needs to be removed because these crowns can be made thinner than PFM or ceramic ones.
After filing down the tooth, there are two ways to make a permanent crown. Most crowns require two visits to the dentist. You receive a temporary crown at the first visit and wear it while your permanent crown is made. Some dentists have a machine that makes a crown in one visit.
With the traditional approach to making a crown, your dentist first will use a piece of thread or cord to push the gum away from the tooth. Then the dentist will make animpression (copy) of the tooth using a rubber-like material. The impression material sets in about five minutes. Then it is removed.
Your dentist will also take an impression of the teeth above or below the tooth that will receive the crown. The purpose is to make sure the crown will fit into your normalbite.
The impressions are sent to the lab, where the crown is made. During that time, you will have a temporary crown placed. These crowns are usually made of plastic. They can be made in advance by the laboratory or made by the dentist during your preparation visit. Then the dentist fits the temporary crown to your tooth.
These crowns are not meant to last for a long time. In some cases, however, a temporary crown can stay in place for a year or longer. If it needs to last longer, a lab-made plastic crown is best. It is stronger and will last longer than a temporary plastic crown that is made by the dentist.
Temporary cement is used to keep this crown in place. It is special cement that is designed to be weak. This allows your dentist to easily remove the temporary crown so your permanent crown can be placed.
At a second visit, your dentist will remove the temporary crown and test the permanent one. Sometimes crowns need more polishing or glazing or some other adjustment before they are placed. Once the crown is ready, it is permanently cemented on your tooth.
If your dentist owns a Cerec or CAD-CAM unit, a crown can be made in one visit. First, a 3D image of the prepared tooth is fed into the unit. Then a computer makes the crown from a block of porcelain. The dentist places the crown during the same visit.
Instructions after the fitting of a Dental Crown.
You shouldn't feel any discomfort or sensitivity after a crown is placed. However, if your tooth has not had a root canal it will still contain the nerve. You may therefore have some temporary sensitivity to cold. If you notice pain or sensitivity when you bite down, contact your dentist. Usually this means that the crown is too high. This can be adjusted easily.
You may notice a thin, dark line next to the gumline on your crowned tooth if you look very closely in the mirror, particularly if you have a PFM crown. This dark line is the metal of the crown showing through. This is not a concern unless it appears on your front teeth and is visible. An all-porcelain crown, with no metal base, may be required to replace this crown.
A crowned tooth is protected from decay, except for the gum line. Your dentist may prescribe a high-fluoride gel for you to use every night if you have a high risk of developing cavities. A crown does not protect against gum disease. You should continue to brush twice a day and floss daily.
Crowns, especially all-porcelain ones, can chip. This can sometimes be repaired in the mouth. Your dentist will etch the porcelain with a special agent and then bond acomposite resin to it to fix the chip. Porcelain repairs often don't last long. If there's a lot of chipping, you may need a replacement crown.
If the crown does not fit well over the prepared tooth, it’s possible that the cement will wash out from under the crown. However, the crown may not fall out right away. Under these conditions, bacteria will leak in and cause decay. If your crown seems loose when you chew, or if you have an unusual odor around the tooth, discuss this with your dentist. Your dentist will check your crowns at your regular visits.
Crowns sometimes fall out. This can be caused by washed-out cement or an improper fit. If this happens, place the crown in a secure, zip-top plastic bag. Then bring it to your dentist. Most of the time a new crown needs to be made. The old crown can be used as a temporary crown.
If you are in no discomfort and your appearance is not affected, don't try to put the crown back in place yourself. If you do need to put it back in your mouth, clean it well on the inside. Use a toothpick to loosen and remove any cement or debris that is stuck to the crown. A wet cotton swab can finish the cleaning. You can replace the crown temporarily using denture adhesive or temporary cement. This is sold in many pharmacies. Contact your dental office right away and try to schedule a visit for the next day.
If you are away from home, seek a dentist in the area who can evaluate the problem