Dental Crowns: An Essential Guide to Restoring Your Smile
A dental crown is a type of dental restoration that caps a tooth or dental implant. Whether you've recently undergone a root canal treatment, have a large filling, or have a broken tooth, a dental crown can restore your tooth's shape, size, and function. This comprehensive guide will delve into the world of dental crowns, their types, benefits, and the process involved.
What Are Dental Crowns?
Dental crowns are fixed prosthetic devices cemented onto existing teeth or implants. They are used to cover a damaged tooth entirely, strengthening it and improving its shape, appearance, or alignment. they can also be placed on top of implants to provide a tooth-like shape and structure for normal oral function.
Types of Dental Crowns
There are four main types of dental crowns:
1. Ceramic Crowns
Ceramic crowns are made from a porcelain-based material and are popular for restoring front teeth due to their ability to blend with the natural tooth color.
2. Porcelain-Fused to Metal Crowns
These crowns offer stronger bonds than porcelain because they're able to be connected to a metallic structure. They're also extremely durable.
3. Gold Alloys Crowns
Gold alloy crowns are a mix of gold, copper, and other metals. They provide a strong bond to the tooth, don't fracture, and don't wear away the tooth itself.
4. Base Metal Alloys Crowns
These crowns are made from non-noble metals that resist corrosion and make for a strong crown.
Benefits of Dental Crowns
Dental crowns offer several benefits:
- Restoring tooth function: Crowns restore the strength, functionality, and aesthetics of a damaged tooth.
- Long-lasting: With proper care, dental crowns can last for many years.
- Custom-made: Each crown is custom-made to fit over your tooth perfectly.
The Dental Crown Process
Getting a dental crown usually requires two visits to the dentist. During the first visit, your dentist will examine the tooth that needs the crown and get it ready for the crown. They may file down or fill the tooth to ensure it can support the crown. Then, they'll get an impression of your tooth which is then sent to a dental lab where a specialist will custom-make your crown. Your dentist will place a temporary crown to protect your tooth in the meantime.
At the second visit, your dentist will remove the temporary crown and cement the permanent one onto your tooth.
Dental crowns are an excellent solution for restoring damaged teeth and bringing back your beautiful smile. They come in various materials to suit different needs and preferences. If you think you might need a dental crown, consult with your dentist to discuss your options and start your journey to a restored, confident smile.