A dental crown acts pretty much as the name suggests. It fully covers a damaged tooth to improve its appearance and to protect it from further damage. It takes the shape and color of your real tooth. It could actually be mistaken for the real deal.
Why You Would Need a Dental Crown
You are a candidate for a crown if:
• Your tooth is damaged and needs restoration.
• Your tooth is broken or cracked and could use the protection.
• The tooth needs a large filling, and there is not much of it left. The crown will e placed to keep the filling in place.
• To improve the esthetics of your discolored tooth.
• Your dentist wants to cover up a dental implant.
• You just had a root canal treatment, and the tooth needs protecting as it recovers.
Preparing For a Dental Crown
We will first examine your tooth before getting you ready for the procedure.
Step 1: Examination
Your dentist will look into your tooth, to scrutinize the state of the roots on it and to see the extent of the damage. If the pulp is infected, they could recommend a root canal treatment to nip the problem in the bud.
If you are cleared for a crown, the dentist will use anesthesia to numb the area surrounding your damaged tooth for your comfort. They will then file out your tooth, especially along the chewing area to create enough space for the crown. Where a large chunk of the tooth is missing and there is not enough of it to hold the crown, we usually recommend filling the tooth to make it possible to install the crown.
Once the filling is done, we put paste on your tooth to make an impression of it. The putty or paste is sent to the lab where a dental crown is manufactured, one that will perfectly fit your tooth. For porcelain crowns, we ensure that they match the color of your teeth. This process takes two to three weeks, within which we will have put an acrylic crown to protect the tooth to be crowned.
Step 2: Installing the Dental Crown
The second visit is quite simple. The dentist will get rid of your temporary crown and get ready to install the permanent one. Some of the checks at this point will include confirming that the color of the crown matches that of your real teeth. If it does and everyone is happy, then your dentist will use a local anesthesia to numb the gum and tooth that is being worked on before installing the permanent crown.
Caring For the Crown
Your newly installed crown will be with you for over a decade. You should, therefore, care for it the same way you would your real teeth. Regular dentist checks will keep it in great shape.
Possible Problems with a Dental Crown
The nerves that are still alive in your newly crowned tooth may cause some sensitivity as the anesthesia wears off. Your dentist may recommend toothpaste that is ideal for sensitive teeth.
If the cement that keeps the crown in place wears out, it may cause the crown to loosen and even fall out. A crown will only fall off it is an imperfect fit. If you experience any of these situations, contact your dentist for immediate action.
A Dark Line Along The Gumline
You may notice a dark line showing next to the gum line. It is harmless, as it is only the metal part of the crown showing through your gum. However, the dentist should ensure that this is not likely to happen. If you notice this, let your dentist know so that they can make the proper amends.
A properly installed dental crown will serve you for your lifetime. All you need to do is to ensure that you keep your dentist appointments.