Perhaps one of the most common dental procedures is the placement of a dental crown. Crowns (or “caps”) are designed to rest over decayed or damaged teeth. Not only do crowns protect injured teeth from further damage, they also restore the original cosmetic look of teeth. Patients have the option of requesting traditional crowns or CEREC crowns. Dental crowns are quite resilient and can last up to 15 years (depending on the type of substance used in construction).
Do You Need A Crown?
If you are suffering from a broken or severely weakened tooth, a dental crown may be recommend. Left untreated, damaged teeth can lead to infections, headaches, jaw pains, gum damage, and a less attractive smile. Before we recommend a crown, our team preforms a full analysis of your oral health. The following conditions often necessitate the use of a dental crown:
- Anchoring fixed brides
- Building and strengthening a tooth post root canal
- Capping dental implants
- Improving a patient’s bite
- Providing protection for a weak tooth
- Providing support for teeth that have extensive fillings
Types of Crowns
Generally, there are four types of dental crown constructions—metal, porcelain fused to a metal base, resin, and porcelain compositions. All have their advantages and disadvantages.
Certain types of precious metals are non-toxic or reactive and are very durable. Gold, palladium, and platinum are the most common all metal crown construction materials. Although they last for a long time, their appearance is quite different from natural teeth. Consequently, most patients pass on all metal crowns unless they are used on teeth near the back of mouth.
Porcelain Fused to Metal Crowns
Metal crowns that have a thin layer of porcelain fused over its surface are known as a PFM (porcelain fused to metal). The porcelain layer cannot completely hide the metal color lying underneath, so this type is useful for molars that are usually non-visible.
One of the most inexpensive options in crown materials is resin. Resin has a nice appearance, but will need to be replaced often as it is the least durable.
Porcelain boasts the nearest appearance to natural teeth and is generally regarded as indistinguishable. Modern porcelain constructions are extremely strong. CEREC porcelain crowns can be created in a dental office, bonded, and placed in the same day.