Receiving a dental crown can be a daunting experience. It can be necessary for a variety of reasons. Crowns are often used to protect a weakened tooth or to hold together a cracked tooth. It can help restore a tooth that is already broken. A crown can support a tooth that has received a large filling or has been severely worn down. It can also be cosmetic to cover a dental implant or to cover a misshaped tooth.
Whatever the reason, a crown can be an important part of your dental health as a way to deal with troublesome teeth. We are here to help you with any questions you have about crowns at our Calgary dentist.
A dental crown can come in a variety of materials:
Stainless Steel – These are prefabricated and they are often used on permanent teeth as a temporary measure. This protects the tooth or filling while a more permanent crown is made from a different material. It fits over the tooth to protect it from further decay or damage.
Metal – Metal crowns are durable and withstand biting and chewing forces. They are often made out of gold, platinum, or other base-metal alloys. They rarely chip or break and are a good choice for molars.
Porcelain-Fused Metal – These types of crowns are colour-matched to the rest of your teeth and are a hybrid where the porcelain is used to match existing teeth, but the metal is needed for strength. The porcelain can be prone to chipping or breaking, however.
All-Resin – This is a less expensive option than porcelain, but it has a tendency to wear down over time. They are also more prone to fractures. Generally crowns range between $800 to $1,700, so this is the lower-priced option.
All-Ceramic or All-Porcelain – This type of crown allows for the best colour-matching to look the most like normal teeth. They are also suitable if you have an allergy to some types of metal.
Receiving a dental crown often takes at least two visits. At the first visit the dentist will take x-rays and file the tooth that is receiving the crown along the chewing surface and down the sides. This is done after the tooth is anaesthetized. The amount that is filed depends on the amount of decay or damage. After the tooth is reshaped the dentist will make an impression of what is left from which to construct the crown in a dental lab. A temporary crown is then placed over the tooth while the crown is being made.
At the second visit the permanent crown is applied. The temporary crown is removed and, after the tooth is anaesthetized, the new crown is cemented in place. Once the new, permanent crown is in place it will last 5-15 years with proper care. A permanent crown does not require any special care aside from regular brushing and flossing. If you have a temporary crown it is important to avoid chewy or sticky foods, as they may pull the crown off. Chewing hard foods may also cause the temporary crown to break.