Dental crowns are prosthetics for your teeth. Crowns — or dental caps, as they’re called — become a permanent part of your teeth and require the same care you give your other teeth. Go to a family dentist near you, and you’ll find the dental crown cost is just as reasonable as other dentists, but you may be able to have it in place sooner.
A dental crown is a prosthetic for your tooth. Unlike a denture, teeth caps are cemented onto your teeth, so they’re permanent. Crowns, or dental caps, cover damaged teeth completely, from the gum line up to the tip. Dental caps can be made to look just like your original teeth, matching the color and shape.
You may need a dental crown to:
- Restore a decayed tooth
- Protect a cracked tooth
- Cap a tooth after a root canal
- Fix a broken tooth
- Improve the appearance of your smile
- Change the alignment of your mouth
- Cover a dental implant
When to Choose a Dental Crown?
When a tooth needs restoring, it is almost certainly damaged by tooth decay or trauma, both of which can result in a loss of tooth structure. The more tooth structure that is missing, the weaker the tooth.
A dental filling can restore a relatively small amount of missing structure and will ensure the tooth is still functional, but when too much structure is lost, then the tooth would be too weak for a filling. In this case, the best treatment is usually a crown.
Sometimes called a cap, a crown covers the entire tooth so that none of the original teeth is visible in the mouth. The crown is custom-made to replicate the original tooth before it was damaged. Most caps are made from tooth-colored ceramics and, once in the mouth, will function like an ordinary and healthy tooth.
When deciding whether a crown is appropriate for a tooth, our best-rated dental expert will assess the extent of the damage to the tooth. Also, we will look at the type of wear and tear on the tooth, as some teeth are substantially damaged by habits such as clenching and grinding. Sometimes a tooth is heavily stained, which can influence the type of materials chosen to cover it.
An extensively damaged or diseased tooth may need root canal therapy, and, in this case, a dental crown is almost certainly needed. When a tooth is severely infected and needs this treatment, it will probably already have lost much of its original structure and couldn’t be restored with an ordinary filling.
Types of Dental Crowns
Your dentist may use different dental crown materials, such as:
- Stainless steel. Usually, these are only temporary, but they’re virtually indestructible.
- Other metals. Dental caps can be made from gold, platinum, or base-metal alloys such as chromium, cobalt, and nickel. They withstand biting down hard, last longer than many other materials, and don’t wear down.
- Porcelain fused to metal. These dental caps match the color of your teeth. However, they can chip or break more easily. Because they look more like regular teeth than any other type, they’re often used when your front teeth need capping.
- All resin. These teeth caps are a cheaper version. They don’t last as long because they can wear down over time, but while in place, they look and function perfectly.
- All-ceramic or all-porcelain. Dental crowns made of ceramic or porcelain look as much like your natural teeth as the porcelain fused to metal ones. They’re perfect for people with metal allergies.
Regardless of the type of dental caps you get, you take care of them the same way you clean all of your teeth — by brushing and flossing. The crowns are now a permanent part of your mouth. The differences between temporary and permanent crowns include:
- Temporary crowns are made quickly in the dentist’s office.
- Permanent crowns are made in a dental laboratory, fitted from a mold of your bite.
- Temporary caps are made from either acrylic or stainless steel and are used for a little while until your dentist is done creating your permanent ones.
What Type of Crown Is Best?
Dental crowns can be made from various materials, and the choice may depend on the tooth’s location.
Highly Visible Tooth
For example, a tooth that is highly visible whenever you smile or talk is best restored with the most natural-looking material possible. In this case, it will almost certainly be an all-ceramic or porcelain crown.
This is made entirely from ceramic material, which is slightly translucent, allowing light that hits the crown to be transmitted right through in a way that is very like a real tooth.
Not So Visible Tooth
In contrast, a tooth that is correct at the back of the mouth and not so visible can be made from a highly polished gold alloy.
This is a very traditional choice because the gold alloy is kind to the opposing tooth and will not wear down.
Other options include a metal alloy substructure covered with porcelain or an entirely all-ceramic crown. These days the latest generation of ceramics are incredibly durable and are made from a type of material called zirconia. If you need a crown on only one tooth, zirconia dental crowns might be a perfect option. Zirconia tooth crowns provide a number of advantages in terms of their durability. However, it is also essential to determine all the possible disadvantages with your dentist regarding this option.
Preparing Your Tooth for Your New Crown
Your dentist will ensure the process is painless by numbing your tooth thoroughly. Next, they carefully remove all the damaged portion of the tooth, shaping it to receive the new crown. They need to remove quite a bit of the original tooth to ensure your new crown can be made to the correct thickness and that it will look and feel natural and not too bulky.
Once your tooth is prepared, your dentist takes a dental impression. These days, the impression is often digital, where your tooth is scanned using a small camera. The camera takes hundreds of digitally stitched pictures to create a 3-D dental impression. It is a process that is entirely painless and comfortable, and quick. A digital dental impression is also highly accurate, and your dentist can check the impression immediately on the screen in the treatment room. Once they are happy with the scan, they send it to the dental lab so your crown can be custom-made to their prescription. In the meantime, your tooth needs protecting, which is achieved by fitting a temporary crown.
The temporary crown is usually made from a plastic material like composite resin in the shade close to your natural tooth color, so it looks pretty good. It is temporarily cemented in place. The purpose of a temporary crown is to protect the tooth underneath. Otherwise, it would feel quite sensitive whenever you eat or drink anything, but it is relatively fragile. Therefore, treating your temporary crown carefully is essential, ensuring you don’t chew anything too hard or sticky using the crown as it could break or dislodge it.
You also need to take care when brushing around a temporary crown, and if you need to floss, pull the floss out sideways rather than snapping it out, as this could pull out the crown. If you dislodge your temporary crown, you must contact your dentist immediately to re-seat the crown. Your permanent crown should be ready in two weeks.
Getting Your New Crown
Once your new crown is ready, you return to your dental office to remove the temporary crown, and the tooth underneath is cleaned thoroughly before your new crown is fitted in place. Your dentist may need to make minor adjustments to get the fit exact, ensuring it fits snugly before permanently bonding it onto the tooth. Once the crown is in place, your dentist will check your bite to ensure the crown is not biting too hard against the opposing teeth.
What to Expect Just after Getting Your New Crown
After getting your new crown, you may need to wait a while for the cement to harden before eating or drinking something. It’s normal for any new restoration to feel a little strange initially, but these feelings should subside after a couple of days. It’s also normal to feel mild sensitivity, especially if your tooth has a deep cavity. Some people find it helpful to use toothpaste for sensitive teeth to help alleviate the symptoms, but if you are concerned and your tooth seems to be getting more sensitive, it’s always worth contacting your dentist to book a checkup.
Caring for Your New Crown
The better you care for your new crown, the longer it will last, and you will also help protect the tooth underneath. You can brush a dental crown precisely like a normal tooth, making sure you hold the toothbrush so the bristles get right down to the gumline and underneath, where plaque bacteria tend to build up. Make sure you floss around the crown thoroughly and if you can’t get on with flossing, ask your dentist for advice on other tools to try. There are plenty of flossing tools on the market, including soft interdental pics and brushes, or you could purchase a water flosser. This device is highly effective at cleaning between teeth thoroughly.
Dental Crowns Last Years
Your dental crowns last longer when they’re made of strong material and installed correctly. On average, stainless steel and all-porcelain crowns last the longest, potentially for the rest of your life with proper care. Resin teeth cap last the shortest time because they’re subject to wearing down. Ceramic dental caps generally last ten years or more; some have been known to last as long as 20 years. Zirconia tooth crowns are made from durable metal and can last you a lifetime.
You do have to care for your dental crowns to get them to last to their full potential. Porcelain fused to metal caps are prone to chipping. Sometimes, a cap may come loose or even fall out. If it does, don’t lose the crown; your dentist can often cement it back in place. Make a dental appointment as soon as possible. Your dentist may be able to accommodate you, and a Sunday dentist appointment also may be available.
You need to see a dentist immediately when you have tooth pain. If you don’t visit your dentist as soon as you start noticing problems with your teeth, those problems will get worse. Once your pain increases, it’s likely due to an infection, which means you must take antibiotics before you can undergo dental treatment, such as having a crown placed.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Much Does a Dental Crown Cost?
When inquiring about the average dental crown cost, remember that it depends on many factors, from where it’s located to how extensive the prep work is needed. In Yonkers, your cost factors include:
- The material used for the crown
- Where your damaged tooth is located
- The size of the tooth
- The experience of the dentist
Porcelain costs more than stainless steel. Back teeth, your molars, are bigger than your front teeth and are more expensive. Additionally, you may want a tooth-colored cap for your front teeth, which is also more expensive than metal. Dental crown costs can be expensive, but they are a durable dental appliance, and your dental insurance may cover most of the cost.
Does Dental Insurance Cover Crowns?
What Are the Contraindications to Dental Crowns and Bridges?
Before the treatment, it’s best to consult with your doctor. If you have dental problems, treat them first to omit complications during the tooth crown procedure. The crown or bridge placement may be contraindicated for patients with:
- Illnesses that prohibit the use of anesthesia
- Frail tooth’s surface
- Bite misalignment
- Allergic reactions to one or more of the materials
Yonkers dental crowns are one of the most effective ways to restore and protect damaged teeth. Our dentists will help you choose the type and material of teeth caps that will fit you best. The choice might depend on the location of the affected tooth, as well as the durability of the material. Ceramic and zirconia crowns provide numerous advantages. The procedure may also entail the application of a temporary crown until a permanent crown is made.
Do you have any questions about the dental (ceramic and zirconia) crowns? For more information or to schedule an appointment with the best cosmetic dentist of Park Avenue Smiles, please contact us for consultation.