If you've ever wondered what a dental crown is, how they are made, and why they might be beneficial for your oral health, then you're in the right place. A dental crown is a tooth-shaped cap that is placed over a damaged or decayed tooth to restore its shape, size, strength, and appearance. It essentially acts as a protective covering for the existing tooth structure. Crowns are custom-made to fit perfectly over each individual tooth and are typically made from materials such as porcelain, ceramic, metal alloy, or even a combination of materials.
The Different Types of Dental Crowns
When it comes to dental crowns, there are various types available, each with its own unique characteristics and benefits. Let's explore the different types of dental crowns:
- Porcelain Crowns: These crowns are made from a combination of porcelain and metal, providing strength and a natural appearance. They are an excellent choice for visible teeth as they can be color-matched to blend seamlessly with your existing teeth
- Ceramic Crowns: Made entirely from ceramic materials, these crowns offer exceptional aesthetics and translucency. They are ideal for front teeth restoration where esthetics is crucial.
- Gold Alloy Crowns: Gold alloy crowns have been used in dentistry for decades due to their durability and biocompatibility. These crowns are highly resistant to wear and tear but may not be suitable for visible areas.
- Metal Crowns: Although not as popular nowadays, metal crowns (such as stainless steel) still have practical applications, especially in primary teeth or temporary restorations.
- Zirconia Crowns: Zirconia is known for its strength and durability while maintaining a natural appearance. It is an excellent choice for both front and back teeth due to its aesthetic appeal combined with robustness.
Each type of crown has its own advantages based on factors such as the tooth location, desired aesthetics, budget considerations, etc. Hence consulting with your dentist will help you make an informed decision about which type of crown would best suit your needs.
The Process of Getting Dental Crowns
The process of getting a dental crown is generally straightforward and can be completed in a few simple steps. First, the dentist will thoroughly examine your tooth to determine if a crown is necessary. They may take X-rays to assess the extent of damage or decay. Once it's determined that you need a crown, the next step is preparing the tooth for treatment. This involves removing any existing decay or old fillings and shaping the tooth to accommodate the crown. In some cases, if there isn't enough natural tooth structure left, your dentist may need to build up the core foundation with filling material. After preparation, impressions of your teeth are taken using putty-like material so that an accurate mold can be created for crafting your custom-made dental crown. The impression is then sent to a dental laboratory where skilled technicians will fabricate your permanent crown based on this mold.
In the meantime, while waiting for your permanent crown to be ready (which usually takes about 2-3 weeks), you'll receive a temporary crown made from acrylic or stainless steel. This temporary restoration provides protection until your final restoration arrives. Once your permanent crown has been received by your dentist's office, you'll go back for another appointment to have it fitted and cemented into place. Your dentist will make any necessary adjustments for fit and bite alignment before permanently bonding it onto your prepared tooth using a special dental adhesive.
The Benefits of a Dental Crown
Dental crowns offer a multitude of benefits that go beyond just improving the appearance of your smile.
- One of the main advantages is their ability to restore and strengthen damaged teeth. When a tooth becomes weak or cracked, placing a dental crown can provide added protection and support to prevent further damage.
- Another benefit of dental crowns is their durability. Made from strong materials such as porcelain or metal alloys, these restorations are designed to withstand the daily wear and tear of chewing and speaking. With proper care, a well-fitted dental crown can last for many years, ensuring long-term functionality.
- Dental crowns also provide aesthetic advantages. Crowns can be custom-made to match the color, shape, and size of your natural teeth, resulting in a seamless blend with your existing smile. This makes them an excellent option for individuals seeking cosmetic enhancements while maintaining a natural look.
- Dental crowns can help improve your overall oral health by restoring proper bite alignment. By covering misshapen or unevenly spaced teeth, they promote better chewing efficiency, which aids in digestion and reduces strain on surrounding teeth.
- Additionally, dental crowns can be used as part of a dental implant procedure to replace missing teeth. This not only enhances your smile but also prevents neighboring teeth from shifting into empty spaces.
Overall, the benefits of dental crowns make them a versatile treatment option for various dental issues. Whether you need to repair damaged teeth, strengthen weak ones, improve aesthetics, or replace missing teeth, consider discussing with your dentist if dental crowning is right for you. With proper care and maintenance, the result will be improved oral health, functionality, and confidence in flashing that perfect smile!
Long Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, located in College Station, TX, are equipped with efficient dentists and modern technologies which facilitate the best dental care facilities for patients. Call (979) 846-0082 and book a consultation with the dentist to learn more.