Got a heavily broken, damaged or root filled tooth? A dental crown can help to strengthen and protect your tooth, dramatically increasing its lifespan.
A crown is an artificial tooth which fits over your real tooth like a thimble. They are made to protect the tooth from breaking down following root canal treatment, or if a tooth is heavily filled, fractured or broken. Crowns can also be used for cosmetic purposes to improve the appearance of teeth.
Crowns can be made of a number of different materials and your dentist will be able to advise you as to the best material dependent on the type of crown required and its placement within your mouth.
A crown is made in two stages. First the tooth will be prepared under anaesthetic and impressions taken of both your upper and lower jaw. This ensures that the technician making the crown is able to adjust it correctly so it will sit within your bite. The dentist will also pick the shade for the crown, so it most closely resembles the natural shade of your teeth.
The impressions are then sent to the laboratory, where the technician will build the crown. This normally take a couple of weeks so the dentist will put a temporary restoration on your tooth or teeth during this time.
At the second visit the temporary restoration will be removed and the new crown fitted.
If looked after correctly a crown should last for many years. The crown itself cannot decay but the tooth underneath it can. It is therefore very important to ensure that you clean around the crown as you do your other teeth and use interdental brushes to clean in between the crown and adjacent teeth.
It may be necessary for you to see the hygienist more regularly to ensure that the crown is kept in good condition
Benefits of crowns
Crowns support a tooth that has been badly damaged – crowns can protect and strengthen teeth
Crowns cover a dental implant – crowns can be used to restore your teeth to their former glory
Crowns improve the appearance of your teeth – they can add length or width to misshapen teeth
Crowns are long lasting – crowns can last for 5-10 years; your dentist will be able to give you an idea of the expected lifespan prior to treatment