What are Dental Crowns and How do They Work

What Are Dental Crowns and How Do They Work?

Dental crowns are a prosthetic device used by dentists to help protect, restore, or cover a damaged tooth. If your dentist has informed you that you need a dental crown, and you aren’t quite sure what to expect, let us help.

What is a Dental Crown?

A dental crown is a prosthetic device, shaped like a tooth, that acts as a cap that covers a damaged tooth. The dental crown is used to restore the shape, size, strength, and appearance of the original tooth. Dental crowns are made out of a variety of products, including stainless steel, metals, porcelain, and resin. Some dental crowns are obvious while others can be camouflaged to look like a natural tooth.

Once the determination is made for the type of dental crown to be used, the tooth must be prepared by the dentist. In some instances, a temporary crown will be placed on the tooth while the permanent crown is being made in the lab. Temporary crowns are often made of plastic and are adhered with temporary cement. Use caution when eating and chewing so that the temporary crown does not fall out.

Once the permanent dental crown arrives, the temporary crown is removed, and the permanent dental crown is cemented on top of the damaged tooth. While a dental crown should not come out, sometimes they do. If you lose a dental crown, seek help from your dentist quickly to avoid any additional complications.

Why Would I Need a Dental Crown?

There are a variety of reasons why your dentist may recommend a dental crown. Some of the reasons may include:

  • Protect a weak tooth from breaking
  • Restore a broken or cracked tooth
  • Cover and support a tooth with a large filling
  • Hold a dental bridge in place
  • Replace a discolored, damaged, or misshaped tooth
  • Cover a dental implant
  • Attach a dental bridge
  • Cover a tooth that has had a root canal

If you have questions about dental crowns and which options is right for you, speak with a Creating Smiles Dental team member.

Dental Crown Maintenance

When you have a temporary dental crown, extra care should be taken to ensure that the tooth and crown are protected until the permanent one can be affixed. Most dentists agree that avoiding sticky, chewy foods, minimize using the side of your mouth with the temporary crown, and when flossing, floss in and pull the floss out the side of the tooth, as opposed to lifting the floss up and out can help ensure your temporary crown stays firmly in place until your next appointment.

Once the permanent dental crown is in place, it should not require any additional maintenance or special care. Continue to focus on good dental hygiene, including brushing, flossing, and rinsing twice daily, along with regular dental visits. Remember that even though the tooth is covered, it is not protected from gum disease or decay. Regular dental checkups can help keep your dental crown healthy and clean.

Can We Help You Attain a Healthier Smile?

At Creating Smiles, our dental staff is here to help. If you have a question, visit our Ask The Doctors page for quick and reliable answers to any tooth related concern.