Dental crowns are hard, protective “jackets” designed to surround the entire portion of the tooth above the gum line. Made of very durable materials, crowns can be custom tinted to match surrounding teeth so they blend in naturally.
Crowns are used to provide support and protection to teeth that have been badly damaged by decay or those that have been chipped, cracked or broken. They’re also used to hide deep discoloration and dark fillings and to protect teeth following a root canal procedure, as well as to provide additional protection and support to the teeth used to support a dental crown.
Application of a crown typically requires two office visits. At the first visit, the tooth will be carefully shaped and prepared for the crown by removing a small amount of the tooth surface material to make room for the crown. An impression will be made of the tooth and sent to the lab where the crown will be made. The tint for the crown will also be selected during this visit and a temporary crown will be applied to protect the tooth while the permanent crown is being made. At the second visit, the temporary crown will be removed and the tooth will be carefully cleaned. Then the crown will be applied to the tooth using a very strong dental bonding agent. Finally, a gentle buffing will help ensure the crown looks great and fits comfortably.
Crowns can be cared for just like natural teeth, with regular brushing and flossing and routine office visits and professional cleanings to keep the crown in good shape. While dental crowns are designed to be resistant to stains, rinsing well after consuming foods or beverages known to stain can keep crowns looking their best.
Today’s dental crowns are made of very durable materials designed to withstand the daily rigors of chewing and biting while still looking great and feeling comfortable. With proper care, dental crowns can last 10 years or longer.