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When Are Dental Crowns the Best Choice?

Dental crowns are occasionally used to restore the function and appearance of a damaged tooth, but they are not always necessary. Our Burnaby dentists explains why this is the best option and when it isn't.

What are dental crowns?

A dental crown is a hollow cap that is placed over a damaged or decayed tooth to give it a natural, healthy appearance. The crown should protect the tooth and restore its function while also protecting it from further damage. A dental crown can also be used to cover discoloured or misshapen teeth.

Types of Crowns

Crowns can be made from a variety of dental materials, depending on the type of tooth and the location of the crown in your mouth.

Porcelain Crowns

These materials should be the most lifelike on the market, with translucency and colour that closely resemble natural teeth. However, they may be more susceptible to chipping and wear than other materials. As a result, only a small percentage of the time are they used to replace teeth.

Composite Crowns

Another material that closely resembles natural teeth in appearance is composite crowns. They are normally more resistant to chipping than porcelain, but they can wear down and stain easily.

Metal Crowns

These are made of gold and should be quite strong. They should not wear down or stain like composite crowns, but they do not look natural, particularly on front teeth.

Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal Crowns

The appearance of these crowns should be more natural than porcelain or composite crowns. They should be chip and stain-resistant, but due to their placement and construction, the metal may show through.

The Process

In most cases, a dental crown requires two visits to our office. Your dentist should administer a local anesthetic during your first visit.

To make room for the crown, your damaged tooth will be filed down and an impression taken. This will be used to make your restoration because it will be custom-fitted to your tooth.

A temporary crown will be used until the permanent crown is ready. At your next appointment, your dentist should remove the temporary restoration and replace it with your new permanent dental crown, cementing it in place.

When are dental crowns the best solution?

Crowns aren't always the best option, and your dentist can help you figure out what's right for you. The problems listed below, on the other hand, are quite common and almost always require the use of a dental crown.

Best Situations for a Dental Crown

  • Large cavities that can't be repaired with a dental filling
  • To cover a tooth that has had a root canal
  • To prevent weakened teeth from breaking
  • To hold together a cracked tooth
  • To restore a broken tooth
  • To provide support to a dental bridge
  • To conceal misshapen teeth
  • To cover dental implants
  • To disguise discoloured teeth that won't respond to teeth whitening

To find out if dental crowns are right for you or to schedule an appointment, contact our Burnaby dentists.

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