A dental crown, sometimes known as a cap, is an artificial cover that is placed over a tooth or implant to give the appearance and structure of a natural tooth. They’re most commonly used to restore or replace damaged teeth, for both health and cosmetic reasons
Health benefits of dental crowns
A cracked tooth increases your risk of infection, gum disease, and tooth loss, particularly if it goes on to break. A crown can be placed over a cracked tooth to protect from infection and breakage. If it’s alreadybroken, a crown can help restore the shape and structure and prevent further problems.
Crowns are also ideal for supporting other restorative dental work. For example, if you’ve had a root filling, you have a heavily filled tooth, or your tooth is too weak or damaged to support a filling, a crown can be used to restore and protect the tooth.
When you lose a tooth, the surrounding teeth can start to shift into the gap left behind. Eventually, this causes your bite to become misaligned, which can lead to muscle imbalances, headaches, facial pain, jaw pain, and temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ).
We previously wrote about how dental implants can help to prevent the problems associated with missing teeth. Dental crowns are an essential part of this procedure, covering the implant and providing the appearance of a natural tooth.
Cosmetic benefits of dental crowns
If you have damaged, discolored, misshapen, or missing teeth, you’ll know that this can seriously impact your self-image as well as your dental health. Crowns can help to restore your confidence and your smile, giving you the appearance of a full, healthy, beautiful set of teeth.
How do dental crowns work?
Dental crowns are custom-created based on a mould of your tooth, then fitted over and bonded to the tooth using dental cement. Most crowns are made from porcelain or ceramic, thanks to the natural look and color of the materials.
Porcelain crowns are not quite as strong as ceramic crowns, so it’s common to opt for crowns made from a precious metal base, with porcelain applied over the top. Those who prefer a non-metal option, or those who are looking for a stronger and more durable option, will typically choose ceramic instead.
Gold or silver alloy crowns, made from a mix of gold/silver and other metals, are a popular option for those who really want their smile to stand out! As well as their cosmetic appeal, they’re incredibly tough and resistant to damage. They also provide a strong seal around the edge of the crown to keep out bacteria and ward off decay.
There are plenty more options, but if you’re not sure which material is right for you, speak to your dentist. They’ll be able to help you choose the best material based on your individual dental health and the outcome you want to achieve.
What does the procedure involve?
First, your dentist will need to prepare your tooth for a crown. That might involve filing the tooth down slightly to make room for the crown or reshaping the tooth to provide a better fit.
Once the tooth is ready, your dentist will take a mould and send the impression to a dental technician, who will create your custom crown. If you’ve chosen porcelain or ceramic, your dentist will also record the shade of your surrounding teeth so that the crown can be made to match.
When your new crown arrives, your dentist will bond it to your tooth using a special adhesive cement. This will create a bacteria-proof seal around the edge of the crown and hold it securely in place.
While you wait for your new crown, your dentist may fit you with a temporary crown. This crown won’t be color-matched so it might be a little more noticeable, but don’t worry — you won’t need it for long! The entire procedure typically takes around two weeks from preparation to fitting.
Does the procedure hurt?
No. The entire procedure is carried out under local anaesthetic, so while you might feel some pressure, you won’t feel any pain during the procedure. As with any dental work, you may feel a little tender afterwards, but this can easily be managed with over-the-counter pain relief.
Are dental crowns suitable for anyone?
Most people can benefit from dental crowns. However, if you have a pre-existing problem like gum disease, it’s highly advisable to treat this before considering crowns.
If your tooth is severely broken down, there may not be enough tooth left for the crown to bond with. In this case, it may be necessary to have a post implanted into the root to support the crown. Depending on the extent of the damage, the tooth may be removed altogether and an implant placed into the jaw. Your dentist will be able to advise you further, so book an appointment if you have any concerns.
How much do dental crowns cost?
The cost of a dental crown varies depending on the material used. You can typically expect to pay between $500 and $3000 per tooth, not including additional treatments that may be needed (root canal, implant, etc.).
While they can be costly, crowns do prevent the need for other expensive dental work in the long-term. For that reason alone, many of our patients consider crowns a very worthwhile investment!
If this is your first Dental Crown, we are offering a reduced price level. Just click below for more information.
How long do dental crowns last?
The lifespan of your dental crown depends mostly on your dental hygiene. While the crown itself will not decay, bacteria can enter around the seal and cause decay and infection. You can still develop gum disease, too, which brings with it the risk of bone and tooth loss.
For those reasons, it’s important to care for your crown as you would a natural tooth. Practice good dental hygiene, and you can expect your crown to last many years!
Restore your smile and your confidence with dental crowns by Mountain Peak Dentistry.
Dr. Bonati leads one of Lakewood’s most trusted reconstructive dental teams. If you want to know more about how dental crowns can help restore your smile, we’re happy to answer your questions. Call us now on (303) 988-7800 to book an appointment.
About Mountain Peak Dentistry:
Mountain Peak Dentistry is the dental practice of leading dentist, Dr. Brennan Bonati. We’re proud to be recognized as the most trusted, reliable and compassionate dental practice in Lakewood, CO and the surrounding areas, providing comprehensive, restorative and cosmetic dentistry .