Dental crowns are a form of dental restoration treatments that come in cap-like structures to encase the above the gum portion of teeth that is worn-out or decayed, granting the root is intact, to enhance the appearance and strength of the treated tooth.
When are dental crowns necessary?
- They are necessary for protection where the crown encasing a chipped tooth holds the structure intact, preventing further damage. In addition to holding together teeth on the verge of crumbling, dental crowns protect cavity ridden teeth by preserving the unaffected brittle parts through providing strength through encasing the affected structure.
- Dental crowns function for aesthetic purposes where they shadow over misshaped, discolored, or damaged teeth. The color of the crown is matched with the adjacent teeth to obtain optimal naturality in terms of results.
- In some cases, dental crowns can be inserted in between dental implants in a structure referred to as dental bridges, to replace missed teeth for a more affordable cost.
Types of dental crowns
1- TEMPORARY DENTAL CROWNS
Temporary dental crowns are the single category of crowns that are designed on-premises. The material of temporary crowns is typically stainless steel or acrylic-based and is used as an initial solution until a permanent crown is achieved. In the case of children, stainless steel crowns are applied to protect damaged teeth until eventually and inevitably, the primary teeth fall out, and so do the stainless-steel crowns with them.
2- PORCELAIN OR CERAMIC CROWNS
Porcelain or ceramic crowns are considered the most durable in comparison to their counterparts. All ceramic and all-porcelain crowns provide more authentic results are ideal for people afflicted by metal allergies. Owing to the traits of porcelain and ceramic dental crowns, they can be applied on the front and back teeth.
3- ALL-RESIN CROWNS
All resin dental crowns are an economical option compared to alternatives. All-resin crowns serve for the minimal purpose of support and conservation compromising on the aesthetic appeal. They are not as long-lasting as porcelain or ceramic and are susceptible to fractures and wear-downs.
4- METAL-INFUSED PORCELAIN CROWNS
Metal infused porcelain crowns are an ideal alternative that falls between all-metal and all-porcelain crown retaining benefits from either material. Unlike metals, metal-infused porcelain can be color-matched to natural teeth. However, unlike metal, this category of dental crowns is prone to wear in comparison to the durability of the all-metal crown. In terms of authenticity, ceramic-infused crowns are second only to all-porcelain.
The metal could become prominent at the intersection of the crown and the gums. The metal-infused porcelain crowns are ideal for front or back teeth replacement.
Evaluation and application procedure for dental crowns
THE FIRST VISIT
During the first visit, the dentist will run an evaluation for the affected tooth. Prior to beginning the design process for dental crowns, a thorough examination of the root should precede it. A few X-rays of your teeth will be requested, and the state of the root will be studied. In case the root is affected, the patient will have to undergo a root canal treatment before opting for dental crowns.
Once the process of application of dental crowns begins, local anesthesia is injected. Next, the target tooth will have to first be filed down from the sides near the gums to create the niche for the crown. Likewise, if the available area of the crown remaining from decay or damage is not capable of sustaining the crown, the filling material will be used to create an anchor for the crown.
Once the reshaping of the support is performed, comes the creating of the mold. An impression of the gap is in most cases achieved via digital scanning. However, with less digital methods, paste or putty is used to obtain the outline of the crown. Adjacent, parallel, and neighbor teeth are all considered in the design of the crown to ensure the bit and chewing is not affected.
The scans and design propositions are sent to an offsite laboratory to manufacture the desired crowns. The manufacturing process takes anywhere between two to three weeks until the crown is sent back to the dentist’s office. Crowns made of acrylic will be applied as a temporary alternative to preserve the prepared tooth.
THE SECOND VISIT
During the second visit, the dentist will remove the temporary crown. The permanent crown is inspected and tested in terms of fitting and color. If everything is matched according to plans, the permanent crown is cemented into place.