A chipped or broken tooth not only looks unsightly, but it can also be very painful. A crown is one way your tooth can be restored to its original shape, appearance, and function. Other uses for a crown are if you have a root canal or a tooth that has a very large filling that is not very strong.
A crown is also called a cap and is a hollow, artificial tooth that is used to cover the damaged tooth. It can also be used to replace a severely stained or misshapen tooth.
Crowns require a procedure by a dentist. First, the dentist will take an impression of your chipped tooth and the surrounding teeth. This impression will be used to make a temporary crown. You’ll be given a local anesthetic before the broken, or chipped tooth is filed down to a stub or base on which the crown will be fixed. After it is prepared, another impression will be taken to be used to make your permanent crown.
The crown is built from restorative material based on the impression creating a tooth that is the right shape for your mouth. While your permanent crown is being made, you’ll have a temporary crown to cover the filed tooth. The temporary crown may not look like your former tooth, but you won’t have it for long.
When your permanent crown is ready, the dentist will remove the temporary and put the final one on the filed tooth. After making sure the crown fits and is comfortable for biting, the dentist will cement the crown into place. If you require other treatments such as a root canal or gum treatment, it may take more than two visits to complete the procedure.
There are several different types of crowns. The type of material used to make the crown usually depends on which tooth requires a crown. We’ll make sure you get the right material or combination of materials that is right for your mouth. Some of the most common materials are:
- Metal – gold alloy and other alloys are used to make metal crowns. They are very strong, but gold will wear down after some time. The main drawback is they don’t look natural especially on front teeth.
- Composite – composite crowns look natural and are stronger than porcelain crowns. However, they wear down more quickly from chewing. After some time, regular brushing will remove the highly polished surface, which will cause them to become stained more easily.
- Porcelain – porcelain crowns look the most natural. They are more brittle than composite or metal and will chip more easily. This is why they are not usually placed on back teeth.
- Porcelain-fused-to-metal – these crowns look natural and are much stronger than either composite or porcelain crowns. They don’t chip easily. Depending on the design of the crown, the metal base may eventually show if your gums recede.
Crowns are strong and can last more than 10 years with proper care. If you have a chipped tooth, contact Blue Turtle Dental. We offer a variety services to help patients attain the smile they want, and we can help you choose the right crown to return your tooth to its original appearance and function. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.