Your teeth are strong and withstand much daily use. However, they are not indestructible. Damage to your teeth can lead to serious problems. Left untreated, the damage can worsen. The tooth may split or shatter. Bacteria can get inside the tooth, causing an infection. Damage can even affect your appearance, depending upon its location. At National Dental Sunnyside, we can restore damaged teeth with crowns.
WHAT ARE DENTAL CROWNS?
There are several types of damage that can occur to your teeth – chips, cracks, cavities. This damage can compromise the strength and health of the affected tooth. The tooth can split or shatter. You may develop an infection inside of the tooth. A crown is a type of dental restoration that covers the entire visible portion of the tooth, similar to a cap. It holds a tooth together, provides strength and protects it from infection. It allows your tooth to stay in its socket, rather than performing an extraction.
WHAT ARE DENTAL CROWNS MADE FROM?
There are a few different types of crown:
- Metal crowns. Metal crowns have been in use for several decades. They are the strongest of all crown options, being practically indestructible. They have been known to last 50 years or longer. Metal can stand up to the hardest bite pressures, making them ideal for teeth toward the back of the mouth. However, despite their strength, they are often undesirable because they are gold or silver in color, meaning that they will stand out in stark contrast to the rest of your teeth.
- Porcelain fused to metal crowns. PFM crowns consist of a metal base with a porcelain coating. The metal provides strength around your tooth while the porcelain helps the crown to blend into the rest of your smile. The major disadvantage of PFM crowns is that a thin metal line often shows through the porcelain at the base of the crown, giving it away as a restoration.
- Ceramic. Ceramic crowns are made entirely from ceramic. These crowns provide the best aesthetics. Ceramic not only mimics the color of your natural teeth but it also similarly reflects light to enamel. While it is not the strongest material available, it is still relatively strong and can stand up to normal biting pressures toward the front of the mouth.
HOW ARE DENTAL CROWNS PLACED?
Placing dental crowns typically takes two visits. During the first visit, we remove some of the enamel from the affected tooth, which is done under local anesthetic. Known as trimming, this process allows for the crown to fit comfortably in with the rest of your teeth. Once the tooth has been trimmed, we will take an impression. The impression is sent off to our lab, where your crown is designed and fabricated. It can take up to two weeks for your crown to be finished, so a temporary crown is placed in the meantime. Once it is ready, we will check it for fit and cement it in place.
BENEFITS OF DENTAL CROWNS
Crowns offer several benefits:
- Your damaged tooth is provided with strength and protection.
- Ceramic crowns provide you with a beautiful, natural-looking restoration.
- Crowns can be used to protect a tooth following a root canal.
- Crowns anchor a dental bridge, or cap a dental implant.
- Crowns allow your tooth to stay in place, preventing the need for an extraction.
If your teeth have been damaged, call National Dental Sunnyside today at (718) 925-3365 to find out if crowns are right for you.