Crowns are synthetic caps, usually made of a material like porcelain, placed on the top of a tooth.
Crowns are typically used to restore a tooth's function and appearance following a restorative procedure such as a root canal. When decay in a tooth has become so advanced that large portions of the tooth must be removed, crowns are often used to restore the tooth.
Crowns are also used to attach bridges, cover implants, prevent a cracked tooth from becoming worse, or an existing filling is in jeopardy of becoming loose or dislocated. Crowns also serve an aesthetic use, and are applied when a discolored or stained tooth needs to be restored to its natural appearance.
A tooth must usually be reduced in size to accommodate a crown. A cast is made of the existing tooth and an impression is made. The impression is sent to a special lab, which manufactures a custom-designed crown. In some cases, a temporary crown is applied until the permanent crown is ready. Permanent crowns are cemented in place.
Crowns are sometimes confused with veneers, but they are quite different. Veneers are typically applied only to relatively small areas.
Why do I need a dental crown?
When your tooth is weak or doesn’t match the rest of your teeth a dental crown can be placed to strengthen it and fix the appearance of your smile.
What does a dental crown actually do?
If there is not enough of the natural tooth left after a root canal treatment or once a large cavity has been removed, then a dental crown can be used to cover and support the tooth.
Discolored or misshapen teeth can be covered by a dental crown to make your smile look and function better.
A weaker tooth that may be compromised and susceptible to breakage or cavities may be covered by a dental crown to protect it from being damaged or infected.
Once a tooth has been cracked or worn down a dental crown can be placed to restore the look of your smile.
Instead of getting implants or partial dentures to replace a series of missing teeth, a dental crown can be secured over a strong tooth to support a dental bridge.
After the synthetic root portion of a dental implant has been placed, a dental crown can then be fastened to replace a tooth.
How do I take care of a dental crown?
With proper care, a good quality crown could last up to eight years or longer. It is very important to floss in the area of the crown to avoid excess plaque or collection of debris around the restoration.
Certain behaviors such as jaw clenching or bruxism (teeth grinding) significantly shorten the life of a crown. Moreover, eating brittle foods, ice or hard candy can compromise the adhesion of the crown, or even damage the crown.
If you have any questions at all about dental crowns give Dr. Zelikow’s office a call at (773) 348-3309. His friendly and knowledgeable staff in Chicago is ready to help with any questions or appointment requests you may have.
In need of immediate care?
Dr. Zelikow provides emergency phone consultation services after working hours and on weekends. Call (773) 348-3309