Something happened to your mouth and after an exam, your dentist says that you probably need a crown. The first question that pops to mind is “What is it?” The basic answer to that is that it is a cap that goes over the tooth and acts as a cover for it. We like to go in-depth here, so we’ll be taking a closer look at what they are made of, their uses and the entire process.
Why You May Need One
You may need one for a variety of reasons. For example, you may have had a root canal, and the crown is put on to protect the now-dead tooth. The same thing goes for a cracked tooth, a worn-down one, or a weakened one. The main goal is to protect what you already have and keep the situation from worsening. They can be used for teeth that have cavities that are too large for a filling – the filling would crack the tooth.
Dental crowns are also used when you get a dental implant. This is what replaces your old tooth. It is anchored by a screw and an abutment – it stays in place and can last up to 25 years. While the whole process there is months-long, people like the fact that they don’t have to do things like take dentures out each night and soak them. They can return to the life they had before.
What Materials Are Used
When you first start considering a crown, it can feel like you’ve walked into a huge department store. There are so many choices out there to pick from. You can get crowns that are made from porcelain, ceramic, zirconia, metal, composite resin, or even a combination of any of those materials. Yes, it can feel dizzying. But there are reasons for picking the material.
The first thing that your dentist will do is see where the crown is going to be located. Is it going to be in the back, where there’s a lot of pressure when you bite? How visible will it be when you smile? Or when you yawn? They check on how your gum tissue looks, how much (if any) of the natural tooth is still there, and also they see what color your surrounding teeth are. Then they will discuss that with you so you can make an educated choice.
First of all, the dentist will take thorough measurements of your mouth. There’s digital technology that can make that much more precise. They will then input all that information and make you a temporary crown that will protect your tooth until the regular one is made. The temporary one is attached via an adhesive that can easily be removed – they don’t use the same bonding material as a permanent crown.
Now it’s just a matter of how many days you want to wait. There are some dental offices that can do one during the same appointment. This is done via CAD/CAM technology. There are also crowns that only cover a certain amount of tooth – this is called an onlay or a ¾ crown. The cost of the crown depends on the material. Usually, you can expect to pay around $800-$1,500, whereas a gold one can cost up to $2,500.
Oftentimes, you will find that, depending on the material that you choose, crowns are no more conspicuous than your regular teeth, This is especially true if you use it for a dental implant. Whatever the case, you treat it like any other tooth, except that you will be a bit more limited in what you eat. This is because, as durable as they are, they are not as strong as natural teeth. That means that things like hard candy and popcorn are out. But you can resume much of your old lifestyle.
Getting a crown does not have to be a scary experience. All it takes is a little research and discussion with a dental professional who has done a lot of them over the course of their career. Then you can go back to enjoying a healthy smile!
Dr. Shaista Najmi and the staff at Ivory Dental Jacksonville are experts at making crowns. They can be done right there in-office and the precision technology makes for a perfect fit. Do you have any questions? They will be glad to answer them at your next appointment – call 904-998-1555 today!