What Exactly Are Dental Crowns?
A dental crown is a tooth-shaped “cap” placed over a tooth to improve its appearance and restore its size, shape, and strength. A traditional restoration or “filling“, frequently referred to, is not always the best course of action when a cavity grows quite large for several reasons. When there is a lot of decay, removing a lot of dental structure might weaken the tooth, making it more likely to break or cause the restoration to fail since there isn’t enough support from the neighboring tooth structure. When your dentist cements the crowns, they cover the whole part of a tooth visible above and at the gum line.
Why Do You Need a Crown?
The primary reason for crowning a tooth is to protect it from chewing forces. However, this procedure is rarely for cosmetic reasons alone because a sizeable piece of the tooth must be removed before a crown can be placed. Dentists can place crowns when:
What Issues May a Dental Crown Cause?
A crown may be a highly beneficial treatment option if you have a severe problem with one of your teeth. However, after receiving a crown, some risks and issues could arise:
Your newly capped tooth could get sensitive immediately after the procedure as the anesthetic wears off. You may have heat and cold sensitivity if the crown-restored tooth retains a nerve. When brushing your teeth, your dentist can suggest using toothpaste formulated for sensitive teeth. The crown is probably too high on the tooth if you feel discomfort or sensitivity when biting down. If this is the case, call your dentist. They are quick to find a solution.
Chips on the Crown
Crowns made entirely of porcelain or fused with metal can occasionally chip. If the chip is tiny enough to be fixed with composite resin, you may still have the crown in your mouth. Usually, this is only a temporary fix.
The crown might need to be replaced if there is significant chipping. On rare occasions, the cement under the crown washes away. As a result, bacteria can enter and decay the remaining tooth, creating a chance for the crown to come loose. If a crown seems fragile, make an appointment with your dentist.
The Crown Coming off
Sometimes crowns fall off. Two causes are the cement holding the crown in place getting loose and the decaying tooth beneath the crown. If your crown comes off, clean the front of the tooth and the crown. You can substitute the crown for a while using dental adhesive or temporary tooth cement sold in stores. Then, call your dentist’s office right away. They will provide detailed instructions on caring for the tooth and crown for the following several days until you schedule for an evaluation. If this happens, your dentist might need to re-cement the crown; if not, you may need a new crown.
An Allergic Reaction
An allergic reaction to the metals or porcelain used in crowns may happen since the metals used to construct crowns are often a blend of metals, but this quite uncommon.
A Dark Line along the Gum Line on a Crowned Tooth
A tooth with a crown frequently has a dark line close to the gum line, mainly if the crown’s material is porcelain and metal. This black line allows you to see the crown’s metal. The black line is unacceptable and may cause your dentist to replace the crown with one entirely made of porcelain or ceramic, even though it is not fundamentally harmful.
What Is the Average Lifespan of Dental Crowns?
In general, dental crowns endure five to fifteen years. However, how well you maintain proper oral hygiene, the amount of “wear and tear” the crown experiences, and your mouth-related habits can all impact how long a crown lasts. These mouth-related habits can include things like
- Ice chewing
- Biting your fingernails
- Cracking open items with your teeth
- Teeth grinding or clenching
- Ice chewing
- Biting your fingernails
How Should I Care for a Crowned Teeth?
Even if a tooth with a crown doesn’t require special care, you should be aware that this does not mean the tooth is immune to decay or gum disease. Maintain proper oral hygiene practices, including brushing your teeth at least twice a day, flossing daily, especially around the crown of the tooth where the gum meets the tooth, and using an antibacterial mouthwash at least once a day.
Dental Crown Alternatives
If a crown is the best option, your dentist will likely recommend it. For instance, your dentist may suggest a veneer or another treatment if your front tooth is too weak or worn down to sustain a filling. However, a crown is the most excellent alternative treatment option to save the tooth if the cavity in your tooth is too big for a filling. Contact us at Smile Dental if you live in Toronto and want to find out more about dental crowns!