A dental crown is a tooth shaped cap that covers the entire visible portion of the tooth.
Dental crowns are a great restorative option for teeth that have been broken, or have been weakened by decay. They can be used for a number of other reasons, which include:
- To protect and strengthen a weakened tooth from breaking, or to hold together parts of a tooth that has cracked
- To restore a severely worn tooth or a tooth that has been broken
- To cover and support a tooth with a large filling; this is required especially when there isn’t a lot of the original tooth remaining
- To make a cosmetic modification and help retain its natural appearance
- To cover mis-shaped or severely discoloured teeth
- To hold in place a dental bridge
- To cover a dental implant
What is the Crown of a Tooth?
The crown of a tooth is the part of the tooth that is visible above the gum or the upper part of the tooth. It is covered with enamel. If the tooth becomes chipped, damaged or cracked in any way, your dentist can place an artificial crown on a tooth. This will help protect your teeth from bacteria and decay and hopefully prevent any further damage. Read on to find out more about putting a crown on a tooth.
What is the treatment process for dental crowns at VRDC?
When preparing a tooth for a crown, you will require 2 visits to the dentist. The 1st appointment requires the assessment of the tooth with an X-ray, preparation of the tooth for the crown, followed by a scan that is taken of all your teeth (instead of having impressions taken), and then a temporary crown is put over the tooth that has been prepared by our experienced and highly knowledgeable team.
The scan of your teeth will be sent straight to the laboratory digitally and the new permanent crown is created in the laboratory by trained technicians
The 2nd visit involves the placement of the permanent crown. In some instances a follow up appointment to assess the progress of the dental treatment may be required, but this will be discussed with you by your dentist.
Crowning a tooth is a relatively common and straightforward treatment. Before crowning a tooth, your dentist can discuss the procedure with you and answer any questions you may have. At the VRDC, our dentists have years of experience doing dental crowns, so you can trust us to take care of you.
What types of crowns are there?
At Victoria Road Dental Clinic, we pride ourselves in our knowledge of modern dental materials and are in an excellent position to recommend the correct choice of crown for you. There are several types of permanent dental crowns available at the Victoria Road Dental Clinic, these include:
Porcelain Bonded to Metal Crowns:
This type of crown is made up of a thin internal layer of metal, giving strength, on to which porcelain is reliably fused creating a natural looking crown. They can be used for front and back teeth and have an excellent performance history.
Zirconia is a biocompatible white opaque material and is very strong. This type of crown requires the least tooth preparation for all the types of crowns that are available and is therefore the most conservative in nature. Due to the opaqueness, these crowns are limited to the back teeth and are ideal for those patients who grind or clench their teeth as they are extremely strong. They have an advantage over gold in that they are tooth coloured and can be stained for character. Zirconia crowns can also be overlaid with porcelain creating highly aesthetic crowns with strong substructures. These crowns require slightly more tooth preparation than zirconia alone but provide excellent aesthetics especially when the underlying tooth colour needs to be masked. They are ideal to mask front teeth which have died due to injury and gone grey in appearance.
All Ceramic Crowns:
These dental crowns are made of strengthened porcelain and contain no metal making them the most aesthetic of crown choices. As they have no substructure, they are not as strong as gold, porcelain bonded to metal or zirconia crowns and are therefore slightly limited in their use (i.e. they more suited to your front teeth).
The required tooth preparation is similar to a tooth receiving a Zirconia crown and thus is very conservative. It is extremely strong and ideal for those teeth found furthest back in the mouth. It is also where the gold appearance is less noticeable.
The required tooth preparation is similar to a tooth receiving a Zirconia crown and thus is very conservative. It is extremely strong and ideal for those teeth found furthest back in the mouth. It is also where the silver appearance is less noticeable. It is slightly cheaper than the other crown options, but still works very well.
Following a thorough examination, your experienced dentist will discuss with you the best option and you can choose what type of crown you would like.
Caring for Crowns
While a crowned tooth does not require any special care, it should be remembered that simply because a tooth is crowned does not mean the tooth is protected from decay or gum disease. Therefore, continue to follow good oral hygiene practices, including brushing your teeth at least twice a day and cleaning in between your teeth with floss or inter-dental brushes at least once a day – especially around the crown area where the gum meets the tooth. Antibacterial mouth rinse can also help.