Dental crowns are a covering for your tooth, otherwise commonly known as a ‘cap’. You could think of it like a helmet for your tooth. They are different from normal fillings in that they are first fabricated by a technician in a dental laboratory and then later cemented on. Unlike removable appliances such as dentures, dental crowns are fixed in place and don’t need to be taken in and out.
They can be made from a variety of materials, such as porcelain/ceramic, gold/metal, or a combination of both. Each of them has its own advantages and disadvantages depending on your specific needs or desires. For example – you may want to rejuvenate the look of your smile, in which case a high-quality porcelain/ceramic crown could be suitable. Or maybe you’re concerned about your back teeth breaking from tooth grinding, in which case gold/metal may be better.
Dental crowns offer a range of benefits for individuals with damaged or weakened teeth. Some of them include:
The fabrication of a dental crown will typically involve two appointments.
Firstly an examination is required to assess the tooth and the rest of your oral health. X-rays may be required to help further assess your teeth. This is to ensure that your specific smile is suitable for a crown. Your dentist will discuss the procedure in further detail and any risks specific to your case.
Local anaesthetic is used to help make the procedure as comfortable as possible. If you’re anxious about dental treatment, your dentist can discuss possible sedation options with you. Any decay and old fillings are removed and the core part of the tooth may need to be built up to help support the crown. The overall size of the tooth is made smaller to allow for the crown to fit and then an impression is taken of your teeth. A temporary crown will be made and placed as necessary.
At the next visit, the temporary crown is removed and your new crown is checked to make sure the colour matches with your other teeth and that it fits properly to your tooth. It is cemented into place and adjusted as necessary to make sure it fits with the way you bite your teeth together.
It can be normal to have some discomfort and sensitivity once the anaesthetic has worn off – this typically resolves within a few days or so.
There are a variety of factors involved that determines how long it will last. Your natural teeth won’t last forever and crowns are no exception, but they can last in excess of a decade provided it is maintained properly with good oral hygiene habits.
Whilst the crown itself will never get dental decay, the area where the tooth joins the crown can. Good oral hygiene with regular brushing and flossing is required to help prevent decay and gum disease around the crown. Habits such as tooth grinding/clenching and chewing on ice cubes will place undue stress on the crown and can shorten its lifespan.
Our experienced dentists can discuss specific advice to help you get the most life possible out of your new dental crown.
The cost of dental crowns can vary depending on several factors, including the type of crown used, the number of crowns needed, and the complexity of the treatment. If you’re considering dental crowns, it’s always best to consult with one of our experienced dental professionals to discuss your specific needs and receive an accurate cost estimate.
We also have flexible payment plans to make dental treatments, including crowns, more affordable and accessible to all.