As a cosmetic procedure or as the finish to a root canal, crowns not only make your smile more beautiful - they can also strengthen and provide extra support to a weakened tooth. Also known as "caps," crowns act as a protective barrier to your existing tooth, giving you the chance to preserve your existing tooth without needing to resort to prosthetics.
While dental crowns are usually ceramic or porcelain, lending a more natural appearance, we here at Wendy Sanger DMD Cosmetic + Family Dentistry do occasionally fit our patients with gold crowns, as well. Understanding the steps of a crown procedure, and having a better grasp of the materials from which you can choose for your crown, can be incredibly helpful when trying to decide if a dental crown is the right fit for you.
What Type of Dental Crown is Best for Me?
Dental crowns are often the finishing touch on a root canal procedure, giving the repaired tooth an extra layer of strength to prevent it from being dislodged or lost. Some people, however, may decide that a dental crown can help restore a smile that has been negatively impacted by stains or erosions on visible teeth.
Crowns are a fantastic option for patients who:
|Had a root canal
|Have a stained or misshapen tooth
|Have a cavity that cannot be filled
|Need a bridge due to a missing tooth
|Have a fragile or broken tooth
|Had a dental implant inserted
Having a weakened tooth (either through erosion, tooth decay, or other issues), or having gaps between your teeth where a tooth used to be, can cause problems with biting and chewing. This can impair your quality of life, leading to jaw pain and damage to your surrounding teeth. A crown minimizes any problems that can arise from weak or missing teeth.
If you are determined to benefit from a dental crown, then we'll work with you over a series of several appointments to ensure your comfort and a proper fit. We'll start with removing any decay on the tooth that's getting the crown to prepare it for the procedure. Next, we'll take an impression out of rubber putty to send to the lab to make your crown. In the interim, we'll fit you with a temporary crown to hold you over while we wait for your final crown to come back from the lab. This generally takes less than two weeks.
When we get your permanent crown, we'll begin by ensuring your mouth is properly numbed up to avoid any pain or discomfort associated with the procedure, then we'll fit it over your tooth and cement it into place. During this part of the procedure, we'll make sure that there's no remaining decay on your tooth and that the fit is perfect.
The type of crown that you receive is largely dependent upon your individual needs and the location of the tooth. Your crown may be:
|Porcelain-fused-to-metal: Extremely strong, this is a popular choice because it is both strong and attractive. However, if gum recession occurs, the metal part of the crown may become visible.
|All-ceramic: These resemble natural teeth, but they tend to be fragile. Patients who grind their teeth may not be a good candidate for this type. Because they require less material to make, they fit well into small spaces in the mouth.
|Gold: These are incredibly strong and durable, but because they are very noticeable, they are not as popular as the other two types. This is good for less visible teeth (like back molars).
If you require a dental crown, it's understandable if you feel overwhelmed by your options. We here at Wendy Sanger DMD Cosmetic + Family Dentistry will help you every step of the way to make the best choice for your unique needs. Please give us a call today at (908) 647-4441 if you have any questions to schedule your next dental appointment.