Have you ever been told by your dentist that you need a dental crown? Or maybe you're just curious about what exactly a dental crown is. Regardless of why you're here, we've got all the information you need to know about getting a dental crown.
A dental crown is a cap-shaped structure that's placed over an existing tooth to protect it and improve its appearance. It's commonly used to restore teeth that are damaged, decayed, or discolored beyond repair with fillings. The crown acts as a new outer surface of the tooth, providing strength and protection against further damage.
Dental crowns can also be used for cosmetic purposes, such as covering misshapen or crooked teeth. They're typically made from materials like porcelain, ceramic or metal alloys; each material has its own advantages and disadvantages.
One common reason why you may need a dental crown is when you have a large cavity that cannot be filled with a traditional filling material. This occurs when the decay has progressed too far into the tooth, and removing it would leave an insufficient amount of healthy tooth structure to support a filling.
Dental crowns are also commonly used after undergoing root canal therapy. During this procedure, the infected pulp inside your tooth is removed, leaving only the outer shell of your natural tooth intact. To prevent further damage or breakage of your already weakened and brittle treated teeth, dentists usually install crowns as they offer additional protection against fractures.
Another instance where you may require dental crowns is in cases where you have severely cracked or broken teeth due to accidents or injuries. In these situations, installing dental crowns helps to protect the remaining portions of your natural teeth while restoring their original form so that they function effectively.
The process of getting a dental crown typically involves two appointments with your dentist. During the first appointment, your dentist will prepare the affected tooth by removing any decay or damage and shaping it to fit the new crown. This usually takes around 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the complexity of the case.
Once this step is complete, your dentist will take impressions of your tooth using either traditional putty or digital scanning technology. These impressions are then sent off to a lab where they will create a custom-designed crown specifically for you.
It typically takes anywhere from one to three weeks for this process to be completed at the lab. In some cases, same-day crowns may also be available if your dentist has access to CEREC technology.
Once your custom-made crown is ready, you'll come back in for another appointment, where it will be fitted and adjusted as necessary before being permanently cemented into place.
Roshan Emam, D.D.S., located in Palo Alto, CA, is equipped with the best dentists and modern technologies that enable the best dental care treatments for patients. Call us at (650) 321-0340 and schedule an appointment with the dentist to learn more.