Dental crowns or ‘caps’ are used for a variety of reasons in restorative dentistry. They not only strengthen a decayed or damaged tooth, but they can also improve the appearance, shape and alignment.
When a tooth becomes weakened to the point that it can’t safely hold a filling, or if a tooth is cracked, chipped, or fractured, a dental crown can return its strength and appearance. The crown saves the tooth, eliminating the need for extraction and a replacement such as an implant. Crowns also serve as anchors for dental bridges.
As the name suggests, a crown fits over the entire area of the tooth above the gum line, restoring the original size and shape of the tooth, and more importantly, giving it strength. Crowns can be made from a variety of materials: gold alloy, dental composite, porcelain-fused-to-metal, or all porcelain. At Massa Dental Center, we prefer to use porcelain for our crowns, if possible.
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“My husband and I have a very high regard for Dr. Massa. He is a brilliant, trustworthy, and skillful dentist. He recognizes potential issues and develops a plan for his patients. Dr. Massa is very patient, caring, personable, and never too busy to answer questions. In addition he chooses his staff carefully, and they are wonderful and knowledgeable as well!” -Deb R.
What Is A Crown?
A crown covers the entire visible portion of the damaged tooth. They are also used as anchors (abutments) for bridges, placed on the teeth on each side of the gap. At one time, crowns were often referred to as “caps.” This was when they were primarily made of gold alloy. Our crowns are fabricated in a dental lab based off of the 3D Itero scans we take after some of the natural tooth is removed to make room for the overlying crown.
Why Are Porcelain Crowns Better?
Porcelain crowns provide the perfect combination of strength and appearance. With proper care, a porcelain crown can last for decades. Plus, dental porcelain closely resembles the translucence of natural tooth enamel in the way it absorbs some light and reflects some light, making it aesthetically superior.
What Dental Problems Call For A Crown?
The purpose of a crown is to restore the strength in a tooth. Crowns are excellent options for the following problems:
- Chipped teeth
- Broken or fractured teeth
- Teeth with large fillings
- Severely worn teeth
- Misshapen teeth
- Severely discolored teeth
- Teeth that have had a root canal
- Teeth with fractured fillings
- The teeth on both sides of a bridge
How Is A Crown Placed?
Placing a crown requires two appointments with Dr. Massa. During the first appointment, any decay and damaged tooth material is removed from the tooth, and the tooth is prepared on all sides and top to creates room for the crown. We then take 3D scans and photographs of your teeth to create a blueprint for the lab to use to manufacture your crown. The lab needs to make the crown to the shape of your original tooth, plus it needs to match the color of the adjacent teeth. Fabricating your crown takes around two weeks, so we place a temporary crown on the tooth to protect it until the permanent crown is finished.
When your crown is finished, you return for your second appointment. We clean your teeth and then check your new crown for fit and for the match to the adjacent teeth. If need be, we adjust the underlying tooth or adjust the crown. Once we’re both satisfied with the bite, the crown is bonded permanently onto your tooth and you’re finished. No recovery is needed; you can eat normal foods as soon as you leave our office.
Do I Need to Provide Special Care For My Crown?
Your beautiful new crown requires no special care, just attentive brushing and flossing every day.
How Long Do Crowns Last?
The lifespan of your crown from Massa Dental Center depends on the materials used. As mentioned above, Dr. Massa believes dental porcelain to be the best material for crowns, as it is very strong, durable, and highly resistant to staining. Porcelain crowns can last for decades. Other crown materials, such as composite resin, won’t last as long.
Regardless of the materials, the health of the tooth under the crown is important. If you practice good oral hygiene and see the team at Massa Dental every six months, your crown should last a long time. It helps to avoid certain bad habits such as chewing ice and biting your fingernails, as these can shorten the lifespan of a crown.
How Much Do Dental Crowns Cost?
The cost of a crown varies depending on the type of tooth, problem, and the material you choose. Once we examine your situation, we will recommend the type of crown we feel fits your needs and we will then discuss the costs involved.
Dental bonding provides our patients with a convenient way to rejuvenate their smiles almost instantly. Fix chipped, cracked, discolored, or misaligned teeth with this natural-looking and affordable procedure. Bonding, as the name explains, uses a composite bonding material to create the most desirable surface for one or multiple teeth. You can choose the shade of your bonded tooth because each is custom designed. Our doctor’s will prepare the surface of your tooth and apply a conditioning substance. Next, the bonding resin is applied while in putty form, and then molded to create the desired shape, the dental assistant will then harden the bonding material with a special UV light. After a few final touches, your new bonded tooth is polished and ready to go!
Find out how porcelain crowns and bonding can dramatically improve your smile and enhance your self-confidence. Contact The Massa Dental Center today for your smile consultation.
Remarkable Esthetic Dentistry and Smile Design