A crown (or cap) covers a damaged tooth with a resilient “shell” that protects it from further damage, decay, wear or discoloration. Crowns can also be used to to anchor a bridge as well as to help correct teeth misalignment. Once crowned, your tooth will have the strength and appearance of a completely healthy tooth.
Crowns are often the final step in saving a tooth and may be applied to teeth with large fillings, cracks, fractures or root canals. If a tooth is missing, a dental implant can be placed and a crown can be used to restore the implant.
Crowns may also be part of a larger cosmetic effort to improve the looks of discolored or worn teeth.
Crowns can be made from several materials in multiple combinations and include:
Each material has advantages and disadvantages.
Ceramic crowns, for example can be carefully tinted and shaped to look natural and appropriate next to your other teeth. This can include slight visual imperfections for more realistic blending with your other teeth.
Gold crowns are more noticeable (although that depends on where they are in your mouth), but they are also the most long-lasting.
We can discuss the options with you and make our recommendation.
Crowning a tooth takes several steps. We must prepare the tooth, which might involve removing existing tooth structure or building up insufficient tooth structure. We then make an impression of the tooth and apply a temporary crown. The permanent crown will be fabricated and sent to us and we will then remove the temporary crown and apply the permanent crown.