Essentially, a dental crown is a false tooth that’s built to fit over your remaining tooth structure. They are used to cover up and protect damaged or decayed teeth. Crowns look and feel just like real teeth, so they don’t just protect the tooth from further damage, but they also restore the natural appearance and function of your bite.
You need a dental crown if you have a damaged tooth. They are often used to repair teeth that are broken in an accident or decayed/infected teeth. A new crown may also be necessary if you have an old, failing filling or dental crown.
Crowns are also sometimes used purely for cosmetic purposes, but this is not very common. Cosmetic treatments like veneers and bonding are less expensive and invasive, so crowns are only used when these are not suitable for treating a particular tooth.
After your consultation, you’ll schedule your initial preparation and fitting appointment. Dr. Tran will begin by cleaning and numbing the area, and administering sedation, if desired. Then, he will trim away any damaged tooth material to clean up the treatment area.
Next, he will take impressions of the tooth. These are sent to a dental lab, where your permanent crown will be built. In the meantime, Dr. Tran will attach a temporary resin crown to your tooth to protect it. You’ll be sent home.
In about 2-3 weeks, your porcelain crown will be sent to our office. Then, you’ll come back for your last appointment. Dr. Tran will remove your resin crown, clean up the tooth, and check the fit of your ceramic crown. If everything looks good, he will bond it into place permanently using dental adhesive. Then, you’ll be sent home to enjoy your new tooth.
No. Your mouth will be completely numb during the process. We even offer dental sedation in Sorrento Valley, so Dr. Victor Tran will ensure that you’re feeling completely safe and comfortable before your treatment begins.
This depends on why you need the crown. If it’s cosmetic, nothing bad will happen. Your tooth just won’t be restored, which can make you feel less confident about your appearance.
However, if Dr. Tran recommends a crown to repair a damaged tooth, it’s likely that the condition of the tooth will continue to get worse. For example, a decayed tooth or a cracked tooth may become infected, requiring root canal therapy. This could even result in the death of the tooth, requiring an extraction.
If Dr. Tran recommends that you get a dental crown, you should follow his advice. Getting a crown to repair a damaged tooth saves you time and money, protects you from further complications, and gives you peace of mind.
Zirconia, stainless steel, base metal alloy, and gold alloy crowns can last for many years. These are the most durable, strong, and long-lasting dental crown materials. Other common dental crown materials include porcelain, ceramic, and resin, which are used due to their ability to match the natural shade of the teeth.
However, these materials are much less durable, are prone to chipping, and are not recommended for teeth located in the back of the mouth because they cannot withstand a lot of force.
For a durable and aesthetically pleasing dental crown, you can get porcelain fused to metal. Most dental crowns will last between 5-15 years but this depends on the location, material, oral hygiene, and wear and tear.
To make dental crowns last for as long as possible, you will want to reduce wear, tear, and staining, and practice good oral hygiene. Brush your teeth in the morning and at night with a soft-bristle toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste.
Remember to floss and brush your tongue. Do not use your teeth to open packages, chew on hard foods or ice, and prevent teeth grinding by wearing a mouthguard.
Inlays & Onlays - This preserves the most amount of tooth structure as it does not require removing any of the tooth enamel before placing an inlay or onlay. A porcelain inlay can be used to replace the tooth structure at the very top of the tooth. An onlay is used to cover the top of the tooth for structural damage that extends beyond the cusp. It is like a partial dental crown.
Veneers - If you are getting a dental crown for cosmetic reasons then veneers are a good choice to cover up dental imperfections. They are different from crowns in that they only cover the front-facing surface of the teeth. A small amount of enamel needs to be removed from the teeth first and you will need to wear veneers for the rest of your life.
Fillings - A tooth that has a cavity or damage can be filled with silver amalgam or composite resin fillings. However, if the tooth being filled is missing most of its structure or if it is a large tooth, this option is not as durable or long-lasting as a dental crown.
There aren’t any specific cleaning or maintenance protocols for dental crowns. However, you must maintain good oral hygiene by regularly brushing your teeth for at least two minutes twice a day and flossing every day.
You should visit the dentist every 6 months for cleanings and checkups to ensure that your dental crowns are in good condition, to remove surface stains and plaque buildup, and to prevent tooth decay and gum disease.
It is really important to wear a nightguard if you grind your teeth in your sleep. This can cause damage to, and even failure of, your dental crown over time. Crowns can become stained over time even when made out of stain-resistant materials so limit your consumption of staining foods and drinks and avoid smoking.