When teeth begin to get dangerously worn, broken, or have cracks and chips in them, crowns are often looked at as a possible solution. It is always preferred to save the natural tooth even with cracks or fractures. A crown is a small cap placed atop the tooth. It will not only improve the look of the tooth but will also improve functionality by replacing lost mass. Crowns are generally made from porcelain or ceramic. Here at Kurt A. Gibson, DDS, PA we can talk to you about the available options regarding crowns.
Benefits of Crowns
Many patients despair when they begin to lose their teeth to tooth decay or gum disease, or for whatever other reason their tooth may have become broken. Any teeth battling decay or disease can be helped by a crown. Once cleaned of bacteria and infection, a crown can give added strength to a weakened tooth. They are also used when a patient has a root canal and the tooth needs added stability and proper healing. Crowns can also be used when teeth become discolored or to cover a dental implant to act as an artificial tooth.
Is Porcelain Preferred?
Porcelain is the most preferred material for crowns for patients. It is the most widely used over all implants placed. It can be colored to match other surrounding teeth. Resilient, porcelain crowns can replace the tooth from gum to the biting surface. Porcelain does have some give to it and it offers a more natural feel when biting and chewing than other materials.
Limiting gaps between teeth helps the natural tooth to last longer by keeping bacteria and food particles from adhering to the surface. This is key to warding off infection and potential tooth decay and gum disease.
Crown placement does take multiple appointments. In many cases, there is a great deal of tooth decay and infection in the tooth and surrounding gum tissue which has to be dealt with first. Along with site preparation and cleaning, x-rays are typically taken to allow for a treatment plan to be created. If upon examination, the patient’s jaw is deemed not strong enough to withstand a crown placement, bone grafts may need to be done to build up the bone.
After the site is prepared, a month is needed to make the crowns in the proper size and color. The subsequent office visit is when crown placement occurs.
Anesthesia is provided for those patients who need it, but it is generally not necessary. It is most often used for those patients who have anxiety about dental procedures to provide comfort to them so they can relax.
By brushing and flossing regularly and avoiding acidic foods like certain fruits and sodas, patients can greatly improve the lifespan of their crowns by years. They should also avoid hard foods, sticky candies, or chewy foods that could damage the crown. Also, regular cleanings and scheduled checkups help too.
Considering crown placement for your broken or damaged tooth and have questions? Contact us to get the information you need. Here are Kurt A. Gibson, DDS, PA we are ready to serve you. You can always call (336) 283-2593 for questions or to schedule an appointment.