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Tooth Crown       

Tooth Crown or Dental Crown (fake tooth, false tooth, tooth cap, "cap") is the permanent dental restoration of the teeth using materials that are fabricated by indirect methods. This dental crown is cemented to your tooth to cap or completely cover it.
 

tooth crown, dental crown, fake tooth, false tooth, tooth cap, cap, gold crown, porcelain crown, PFM crown, full metal crown, implant, 

 
The teeth to be crowned are prepared in a very specific way (filing
down the tooth to make room for crown) by a dentist. Records are given to a dental technician to fabricate the dental crown, which can then be inserted at another dental appointment.

The main advantages of the indirect method of tooth restoration:

  • you do not need to be in the dental chair
  • use of materials that require intense heat to be processed with superior mechanical properties, such as gold and natural looking porcelain
  • produce a restoration of much higher quality

Indication to Restore with a Tooth Crown

When Tooth Decay is first detected, the usual action taken by the dentist is to provide a tooth filling or "cavity filling" (intra-coronal restoration) inside of the remaining tooth structure.

The restoration consist of a number of materials, including silver-colored amalgam, tooth-colored resin or gold. Inlay is also intra-coronal restoration.

If there is not enough remaining solid tooth structure after Tooth Decay, fracture, chipped or sensitive teeth,  it might very well require a tooth crown or an extra-coronal restoration.

The teeth also need to be protected by a crown because of Root Canal Therapy.  After root canal, the tooth becomes brittle and more apt to fracture.  If you are receiving the crown after root-canal treatment, your dentist may insert a post-and-core foundation. The crowns also provide a better seal against invading bacteria and germs.

Crowns are also used to improve the appearance of natural teeth that are malformed, mal-positioned or discolored  (compromised esthetics) to make better your beautiful  smile.

Once placed and properly integrated into the bone, implants may then be fitted with a dental crown

 

Different Crown Materials

1. Metal Tooth Crown

The strength of a metal crown is a tremendous advantage. Crowns made of metal, can consist of different materials:
  • Full gold crowns (FGCs) referred to as a gold crown. This crown includes gold alloy with at least 75% high noble metals: gold, platinum, palladium. It also contains but not limited base metals: silver, copper and tin.
  • Metal alloys crowns (palladium).
  • Stainless steel  or base-metal alloy (nickel or chromium).
BENEFITS:
  • Full gold crowns are of better quality when they are high in noble content.
  • Metal crowns cause less wearing away of neighboring teeth than other crowns, and also require less filing down the teeth than other crown materials.
  • Metal also tends to last the longer, resisting breaks and chips better than other materials.
  • They are durable and often used for less visible teeth.
DOWNSIDE:
  • The obvious drawback to metal crowns is their metallic (non-esthetic) appearance.

2. Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal (PFM)

Porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) crowns consist of a metal core inside and a layer of porcelain outside blended together. PFM crowns look just like normal teeth.

BENEFITS:

  • Unlike purely metal tooth crowns, shade will be matched to the color of existing teeth.
  • Porcelain provides the most natural final appearance of any other dental crown material.
  • PFM crowns can be used on both the hidden and prominent teeth.
  • PFM crowns are of better quality when they are high in noble metal inside.
  • They are durable and have enough the strength.
DOWNSIDE:
  • Porcelain can wear away at neighboring teeth.
  • More vulnerable to chipping and breaking than metal.
  • Porcelain's translucence sometimes allow the inside metal core to show through.
  • There is more a problem at the crown-gum line, especially if the gums recede over time.

3. Metal-Free Tooth Crown or All Ceramic Restorations

Dental crowns made complete of porcelain or ceramic result in the most natural final appearance.
 
MATERIALS:
  • Vitadur Alpha - In-ceram - Procera - Empress - CEREC
BENEFITS:
  • All-ceramic crowns look just like normal teeth.
  • Perfect for prominent teeth.
  • The safest for patients who might have an allergy to metals.
DOWNSIDE:
  • Not quite as resistant to breaking and chipping.
  • Can cause some wearing away of neighboring teeth.

4. Resin Crowns

This type of crowns are the least pricey than other materials, but they are also the most vulnerable to wear, breaks, and chips.
 

5. Temporary Tooth Crowns

Permanent crowns are made in a dental laboratory for a short waiting period. On the day of your visit dentists can make temporary crowns for better appearance until the final crowns are ready.
 
The temporary crowns are usually constructed with acrylic or prefabricated stainless steel.
 

Longevity of Tooth Crown

At a second visit, the temporary crown is removed and the permanent dental crown is cemented to your tooth. The new crown could be mildly sensitive to cold temperatures for a few weeks.
 
Although, if the sensitivity is serious, does not recede, or if the bite feels tight, contact your dentist. Extra adjustments may be necessary.
 
Depend on the skill of the dentist and his lab technician, permanent tooth crowns can actually last up to the life of the patient (50 years or more) with proper care.
 
The average lifetime of a tooth crown is around 10 years. NOTE: many dental insurances in the USA will allow for a crown to be replaced after only 5 years.
 
Full gold (high in noble content) crowns last the longest. PFM's, or porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns have a higher chance of problem than a full gold crown, as they incorporate brittle porcelain.
 

Proper Care Tools and Best Products

But the most important factor affecting the lifespan of any dental crown is the continuing oral care performed by the patient. A crowned tooth is not protected from tooth decay or gum disease!
 
To help fight against bacterial plaque, dentists recommend the ESSENTIAL tools and dental products as INTERDENTAL or BETWEEN TEETH and CROWNS CLEANINGS:
 

You should continue performing  a great oral hygiene!

 

Broken Crown as a Dental Emergency

  • It is possible that the cement could wash out from under the dental crown, but the crown stands in place. Under these conditions, germs or bacteria can leak in and cause tooth decay.

If your crown seems loose, contact your dentist!

 
Your crown may also fall out, due to a lack of cement or an improper fit. Clean the crown inside and your tooth. Put back the dental crown temporarily using denture adhesives:
or temporary cements:
sold for this purpose at drug store. You may need a new crown or to re-cement the old one.

Contact your dental office immediately and schedule an appointment for the next day!

 
Contact Dentist
 
Looking forward to hearing from you

Aleksandr V. Melekhin, DDS

 

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