Greetings from our dental blog! In today’s post, Dr. Fisher will be discussing dental crowns. Think of them as special caps that work to repair and safeguard weakened teeth. They’re incredibly useful in dental care. Whether you’ve been advised to get a crown or you’re just interested in learning more about this procedure, you’re in the right place for all the key details you need.
What are dental crowns?
Dental crowns, often referred to as “caps,” are custom-made coverings that encase a damaged or weakened tooth. They serve as a protective shell, restoring the tooth’s shape, size, strength, and overall appearance. Crowns are typically recommended when a tooth has been severely decayed, fractured, or weakened due to a large filling, root canal treatment, or other dental issues.
What are the different types of crowns?
There are several types of dental crowns, each with its unique advantages:
Zirconia crowns: Made from a strong, tooth-colored material called zirconia, these crowns offer a balance of strength and aesthetics. They are highly durable and are suitable for both front and back teeth.
Metal crowns: These crowns, often composed of gold or other metals, are incredibly durable and are less likely to chip or break. However, their metallic appearance makes them less desirable for visible areas.
Porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) crowns: These crowns blend the strength of metal with the natural appearance of porcelain. They are durable and offer a pleasing aesthetic, making them a popular choice for many patients.
All-ceramic crowns: Known for their exceptional natural look, these crowns are entirely made of ceramic material. They are an excellent choice for front teeth due to their unmatched aesthetic appeal.
What are the differences between crowns and fillings?
While both crowns and fillings are dental restorations, they serve different purposes:
Fillings are used to repair small to moderate areas of tooth decay or damage. They involve removing the affected portion of the tooth and filling the space with a restorative material, typically composite resin. Fillings are a conservative treatment option suitable for less severe cases.
Crowns are recommended for more extensive damage or when a tooth’s structural integrity is compromised. Unlike fillings, crowns completely cover the entire visible portion of the tooth, providing maximum protection and reinforcement.
When do dentists recommend a crown?
Determining when to recommend a crown involves a careful assessment of the tooth’s condition. Here are common scenarios where a dentist might suggest a crown:
After a root canal treatment: Following a root canal procedure, a tooth may become more fragile. A crown is often recommended to safeguard and strengthen the treated tooth.
Cracked or fractured teeth: Teeth with significant cracks or fractures are vulnerable to further damage. A crown can provide the necessary reinforcement to prevent the tooth from breaking. Read more about cracking teeth in our previous blog post.
Severe decay: When a tooth has extensive decay that exceeds the capacity of a filling, a crown becomes necessary to restore and protect the tooth.
Cosmetic improvement: Crowns are used for aesthetic purposes, such as correcting discoloured, misshapen, or poorly aligned teeth, providing a natural and pleasing smile.
dental crowns are invaluable tools in restorative dentistry, offering both functional and aesthetic benefits. Understanding the different types of crowns, their uses, and how they compare to fillings empowers you to make informed decisions about your dental care.
You may want to read our earlier blog post “Let’s Talk Crowns”.
If you have any questions about dental crowns or any other dental concerns, feel free to reach out to us. We care about people!