Crowns – what you need to know

Dental crowns, sometimes referred to as caps, are used to cover a natural tooth that has been damaged. They are used by dentists to restore the shape, appearance and function of a tooth. Not only do crowns protect teeth, they enhance your smile. Here’s everything you need to know about dental crowns.

When are dental crowns recommended?

There are three situations where dental crowns are recommended:

  1. A dental crown can be used to repair a tooth damaged by a large or severe cavity. A crowned tooth is completely covered which means it has added structural support.
  2. A dental crown can be used on teeth that have undergone root canal treatment or are badly decayed.
  3. Another type of crown, one that is fitted over a dental implant, can be used when a tooth is completely missing.

What is the procedure for having a tooth crowned?

Your tooth is filed down by the dentist to create space for the dental crown to be placed over it. An impression of the tooth is made and a temporary plastic crown is fitted inside your mouth until the permanent crown has been created. The dental lab typically takes two-three weeks to fashion the permanent crown, which will look and feel like a natural tooth.

How long will a crown last?

A dental crown can last for a decade or more, depending on how well you take care of it. Regular brushing and flossing as well as forgoing certain foods, like hard, chewy toffee, can extend the life of your crown.

Caring for your crown

A cavity can still form in the remaining tooth under the crown. Gum disease is also still possible, so as mentioned, you need to practise good oral hygiene. See your dentist or hygienist every six months for regular check-ups and cleanings.

Crowns are cemented in place, but in rare cases they can become loose from an injury, eating something hard or using your teeth in a way they shouldn’t be used, like ripping open a package. It is important to advise your dentist if you experience any movement of your crown.

Your dentist can discuss with you how a crown can improve the quality of your teeth and smile. Book in today for a consultation.

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