A crown is a tooth-shaped “cap” that is placed over the tooth. It completely covers the tooth to restore its shape, size, and strength, while improving its appearance. Once cemented into place, the crown completely encases the visible portion of the tooth that lies above and at the gum line.
A crown serves many different purposes. A crown may be used to protect a weak tooth from breaking or to hold together parts of a cracked tooth. When a tooth is severely worn down or is broken, a crown may be placed on the tooth to restore strength of the tooth. Crowns are recommended when there is a large filling in a tooth and there is not much natural tooth material remaining or to improve the appearance of misshaped or discolored teeth. Finally, a crown can be used to hold a dental bridge in place, or to cover a dental implant.
There are several different crown materials available. Permanent crowns can be made from all metal, porcelain-fused-to-metal, all resin, or all ceramic. The assistant will review the different types of crowns with you before the crown is started to determine what type of crown is best for you.
Crowns are completed in two separate appointments. During your first appointment, impressions of your teeth are taken so that the lab can create a crown that identically matches your original tooth. Next, the dentist files down your tooth on the chewing surface and sides to make room for the crown. After this has been completed, he will place a temporary crown over the tooth.
The temporary crowns are created in the dentist office, the day of your first appointment. These temporary crowns serve as a temporary restoration until the permanent crown can be made in the dental laboratory. If a temporary crown comes off, come back to recement or try a temporary crown adhesive from the sotre. But, do not use unapproved glues such as super glue.
Approximately two weeks after your first appointment, the temporary crown is removed and the permanent is put into place. The permanent crown is specifically custom made for your mouth by the dental lab, making the crown very comfortable and appear completely natural.