Dental Crowns Q & A with Dr. Martin
What is a dental crown?
A crown is a tooth-shaped "cap" that's used to cover a damaged or weak tooth. It is sculpted to the shape of the original tooth and can enhance the tooth's appearance and stability. The crown is placed on top of the original tooth, completely covering the area of the tooth that can be seen above the gum line. It's sealed in place with a special cement.
Do I need a crown?
Dr. Martin may recommend a crown in a variety of situations. A crown can cover a large restoration, a strangely-shaped or dark tooth, or a dental implant.
In addition to making a tooth more aesthetically appealing, a crown can serve a practical purpose by strengthening a natural tooth. Teeth with large fillings and little natural tooth remaining are especially susceptible to breaking, but a crown can prevent this from happening.
Dental crowns can restore your smile's beauty. They can also be a reliable solution for teeth that need strengthening as a result of severe decay, cracks, fractures, or fillings.
Which kind of crown is right for my teeth?
Dental crowns can be constructed from many materials, including:
- Stainless steel
- Gold or another alloy
- Porcelain fused to high noble gold
The choice of material depends on multiple factors. For example, stainless steel is typically the go-to material for temporary crowns. It's common for dentists to use prefabricated stainless steel crowns to cap children's baby teeth.
Metal crowns are strong and able to endure the force of chewing and eating, but due to their color, they’re usually reserved for use in the back of the mouth.
Porcelain fused to high noble gold crowns closely match the appearance of natural teeth.
All-ceramic crowns are another choice for patients, and with improved technology these crowns are becoming stronger and more resistant to breakage. All resin crowns are one of the most affordable crown options, but they're also more susceptible to cracking. Crowns are expensive, and it’s important to fabricate them with the best materials to maximize their longevity. Dr. Martin only uses the best of materials when making your crown. He does not use non-precious alloys in his porcelain fused to metal crowns. Some of these alloys can cause allergies and are known carcinogens. He only uses high noble gold under the porcelain.
What's involved with a dental crown procedure?
A dental crown procedure typically involves two visits to the dentist, at a minimum. At the first appointment, you'll have X-rays taken so that Dr. Martin can determine the health of the tooth that needs a crown.
After numbing the tooth, Dr. Martin will shape it so that the crown can be attached properly. After that, Dr. Martin will make impressions of your teeth, and work with the dental lab to construct a custom crown. Dr. Martin will fabricate a temporary crown to safeguard your tooth until the permanent crown is completed and in place.
To learn more about dental crowns, call The Martin Dental Center For Oral Health and Aesthetics or request an appointment online.