As we age we all encounter changes that affect us physically and this also includes our teeth. Teeth can weaken over time and become susceptible to fractures, chips and breaks. Tooth decay, gum disease, fillings, trauma and even changes in normal chewing habits can cause teeth to break down over time. An impaired tooth should be protected against further damage or deterioration and a dental crown will provide that much needed protection.
A porcelain crown is a tooth shaped cover or cap placed over a weakened or broken tooth to protect it from further fracturing or deterioration. A crown is also used to cover a discolored or badly shaped tooth, to protect a tooth after a root canal, and even to hold a dental bridge in place.
A dental crown can dramatically improve the appearance of a tooth, restoring its shape, size and strength. Porcelain crowns are considered to be aesthetically pleasing since they closely resemble the color of your natural teeth and they are typically a good choice for front or back teeth. Porcelain crowns are continuously being improved for better quality and sustainability. Advances in porcelain materials, such as newly developed materials like zirconium and empress 2, can better withstand the forces of chewing.
The Dental Crown Treatment Plan
It will usually take two visits to your dentist to complete your crown. Your Greeley dentist will shape and prepare the tooth during the first visit so that the dental crown can fit over the tooth. In some cases, the tooth may require an additional dental procedure to repair areas of decay or replace old fillings so that the tooth can adequately support the dental crown. An impression of the tooth is then taken and a temporary crown is placed over the prepared tooth to protect it. A temporary crown can be made right in the dentist’s office and serves as protection for the tooth while the custom-fit permanent crown is constructed in a dental laboratory.
During the second visit your dentist will remove the temporary crown and replace it with the permanent crown. Once your dentist determines that the shape, fit and color of the crown are satisfactory it will be permanently cemented into place over any visible portion (above the gum line) of the natural tooth. In some instances the dental crown may not fit properly and a second impression may be needed to fabricate a crown that fits just right.
Porcelain Crown Post Treatment Expectations
After a crown has been successfully placed a patient may occasionally experience slight discomfort, mild pain when chewing or sensitivity to temperature changes. Your dentist may advise you to take over-the-counter pain medication to alleviate any discomfort. If symptoms exist for more than a few days or if your bite doesn’t feel right, you should contact your dentist for adjustment of the crown, if necessary.
Filling Versus Dental Crown
You may be wondering why you can’t just get a simple filling in lieu of a crown. A crown is required when a tooth has been weakened to the point where it is not strong enough to support a filling. Using a filling instead of a crown may cause the tooth to fracture beyond repair and could ultimately result in loss of the tooth.
Cleaning Your Crown
Porcelain crowns can give you that beautiful Hollywood smile you’re looking for. Longevity and durability of your crown will directly depend upon proper oral hygiene and also materials used to make the crown. To get the longest life out of your dental crown it is extremely important to brush and floss daily and see your dentist regularly. If you develop a cavity on a tooth adjacent to the crown and it is not taken care of it can negatively impact the crown.
Consulting with your Greeley dentist about dental crown options and the best treatment plan for you is your first step. Ascent Family Dental is a family practice where they treat your smile like it was their own. They are committed to treating their patients like family and providing the best possible dental care.
You are invited to call Ascent Family Dental at (970) 351-6095 to schedule a visit. Dr. Scott Williams and his experienced, caring staff will make you feel welcome and help you develop a personalized treatment plan to give you the smile you want.