What is a crown?
A crown is a “cap” placed over a damaged tooth and held in place by dental cement.
What are crowns made from?
Crowns can be made from gold and metal alloys, acrylic, porcelain and ceramic. Porcelain or ceramic crowns can be matched to the colour of your natural teeth. Metal alloys are generally stronger than porcelain and may be recommended for back teeth.
When is a crown required?
Your dentist may recommend a crown to:
– Replace a large filling when there isn’t enough tooth remaining
– Protect a weak tooth from fracturing
– Restore a fractured tooth
– Attach a bridge
– Cover a dental implant
– Cover a discoloured or poorly shaped tooth
– Cover a tooth that has had root canal treatment
What is the procedure for placing a crown?
1. The suitability for a crown is assessed and thereafter your dentist will advise on material choices, treatment sequence and any other concerns you may have.
2. At the second appointment, the teeth to be crowned are prepared. This involves reduction of the tooth size (sometimes under local anaesthesia) followed by a mould of the prepared tooth. This trimming of the tooth is required to create space for the crown to be fitted. The mould taken is then sent to a laboratory where skilled technicians will fabricate the crown. In the meantime, a temporary crown is made and fitted onto the trimmed tooth.
3. At the next appointment, the temporary crown is removed and the tooth surfaces cleaned. The completed crown is tried on the tooth for fit, harmony with the bite, and appearance. Finally, the crown is cemented onto the prepared tooth with dental cement.
How do I look after my crown?
The most vulnerable portion of the crown is the margin between tooth and crown. Regular check-ups with your dentist and hygienist are important.