People get dental crowns for a variety of reasons. Many of those reasons may be cosmetic, but some are due to a patient feeling pain in his or her teeth. In fact, many times patients aren’t aware that a significant issue is developing with their teeth until they start to feel pain, or the issue is discovered during a routine dental exam.
The fact is, it’s not always easy to tell when you may need a dental crown. To be sure, your dentist will have the definitive opinion on whether a crown is necessary, but there are signs you can look out for that may indicate you need a dental crown.
What is a Dental Crown?
A dental crown is a permanent restoration that is bonded to a tooth, in order to completely cover a tooth or dental implant. Crowns are made from various materials including porcelain, gold, and synthetic resins, and are intended to provide additional strength and endurance to a tooth, along with improving its appearance.
When is a Dental Crown Needed?
The durability and strength of a dental crown comes in handy for a variety of dental maladies. If you are experiencing any of the following, then that’s a sign your dentist may recommend a dental crown:
- Broken teeth, or teeth that have been significantly worn
- To strengthen and cover a tooth with a large filling, where there isn’t much tooth material remaining
- A cracked tooth that needs held together
- Needing dental bridges (crowns can be used to support bridges)
- Covering a dental implant
- Significant cosmetic modifications
- In children, to protect teeth that are at high risk for decay, or to save a tooth that has been significantly damaged
How is a Dental Crown Placed?
A dental crown is usually placed over the course of two dentist visits – the first for inspecting and preparing the area, and the second for the placement of the crown. At your first appointment, your dentist will take x-rays and determine if any other procedures (such as a root canal) will be needed before the crown can be placed. The tooth will then be shaped by the dentist, with the chewing surface and sides filed to accommodate the crown. A temporary crown may also be placed.
On the second visit, your dentist will use a gentle, local anesthetic to numb the area, double-check the surrounding teeth to make sure the fit and color of the replacement crown are perfect, and then finally cement the crown in place permanently.
How Should I Care for a Crown?
Thanks to the strength of the materials typically used in their construction, dental crowns don’t usually require anything more than your standard oral hygiene routine. Remember, though – just because a tooth is crowned doesn’t mean it’s now immune to further decay. You should continue to brush twice a day, floss, and rinse the area with an antibacterial wash once a day. With adequate care, the typical dental crown should last between five and 15 years.
Contact Dr. Lordo’s Office Today to Get Started
Having a dental crown placed doesn’t need to be a complicated or drawn-out affair. Crowns can provide an effective, long-lasting solution to a number of dental issues. If you notice some of the signs that you may need a crown, contact Dr. Lordo’s office any time via our online contact form, or by calling 614-885-4754. You can also request an appointment to learn about our metal-free crowns.