Artificial crowns are placed over your teeth for many reasons. Sometimes they strengthen compromised teeth while other times they improve how your teeth appear.

What is a Crown?

A crown, also called a “cap”, is a tooth-shaped cover placed over your natural tooth to enhance its strength, function and esthetics. They are made of many different materials – metals, ceramics, resins etc. In fact, tooth-colored crowns, like those made of porcelain, can be fabricated to mimic the adjacent natural teeth perfectly.

Why Do I Need a Crown?

If you have any of the following, you may need a crown:-

  • A grossly decayed tooth that cannot be restored with a simple filling

  • A missing tooth/teeth with need for a bridge

  • Cracked teeth

  • Worn teeth

  • Covering a dental implant

  • Endodontically treated tooth

  • For improving your smile by altering a badly shaped/colored tooth

Choosing the Right Crown

Although crowns can be made of many different materials, not all materials are suitable for all parts of your mouth. The following is considered before choosing a crown:-

  • Location of the tooth

  • Position of the gumline

  • Your preferences based on cost, esthetics, etc.

  • Visibility of tooth when you smile

  • Appearance of tooth initially

  • Function of the tooth

Placing a Crown

The following are the steps involved while placing a crown:-

1. The concerned tooth is reduced in size so that the crown can fit over it. Decay, if any, is removed. And if the tooth is weak, then the core is built-up.

2. Impression is taken to model the crown.

A. For CEREC (cad cam) same day crowns, a virtual computer impression or scan is taken to fabricate the crown in the office which is seated at the same appointment.

B. For lab crowns, an impression is taken and sent to the lab to fabricate the crown.

a. A temporary crown is placed over the prepared tooth as the final crown usually takes a week or two to be ready. You may experience mild sensitivity to hot and cold drinks during this time. Avoid eating sticky food that can dislodge the temporary crowns.

b. Dentist/ lab technician fabricates the definite crown.

c. Once the crown is made, the temporary is removed, and then the final crown is placed over the concerned tooth. Adjustments are made and once both you and the dentist are satisfied with the result, the crown is cemented to the tooth.

How to Care for your Crown:-

  • Don’t chew on hard substances, like pencils, ice etc. They can damage your crown.

  • Visit your dentist regularly for check-ups.

  • Brush your teeth twice a day with a fluoridated toothpaste, and floss between your teeth to maintain good oral hygiene.

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