Over a lifetime of use, our teeth undergo a lot of wear and tear. As dental crowns are a way to protect vulnerable teeth, one of the common dental services our dentists provide here at Riverside Dental Care is the placement of dental crowns.

Dental Crown Basics

Dental crowns are tooth-shaped caps which are placed over teeth which no longer have enough natural dental material to protect the tooth. Crowns are often placed after what remains of a tooth is shaped to receive the crown and is cemented into place with dental cement.

Different Dental Crown Materials

There are various materials which can be used to construct a dental crown. These materials are all dental safe and are shaped to fit comfortably into your mouth with your other teeth. Which materials are using in your dental crowns can depend on several different factors.

  • Gold alloy – On its own, gold is too soft to make a good crown, so it is blended with porcelain to make a durable crown. As gold is a heavy metal, the gold alloy crown is hypoallergenic, making it ideal for those who choose a metal crown for out-of-sight teeth but are allergic to the blend of metals in a stainless steel crown.
  • Ceramic – Easily fabricated and able to be color-matched to your natural teeth, ceramic crowns can be fairly porous. This may lead to them staining if you ingest foods or drinks with strong pigmentation.
  • Porcelain – More refined than ceramic, porcelain crowns are more durable and less porous, which makes them less prone to staining than ceramic crowns.
  • Resin – One of the least expensive dental crowns, resin crowns are also the least durable, as the resin does not wear well over time.
  • Stainless steel – Often used for children’s dental crowns on their baby teeth, stainless steel crowns are made of a blend of nickel, aluminum, chromium, and titanium. However, as around 10-20% of the population is allergic to nickel, this blend can be less than ideal for many dental patients.

At Riverside Dental Care, we prefer to use porcelain dental crowns. This material can be easily color-matched to your own teeth, allowing the crown to blend naturally in with the rest of your teeth.

Uses For Dental Crowns

Dental crowns are one of the many dental services we offer as a way to repair damaged or worn teeth. Some of the basic utilities of a dental crown are:

  • Covers teeth ground down by teeth grinding and clenching
  • Acts as protection for teeth which have been chipped
  • Cap teeth which are misshapen or discolored
  • Helps correct a bite which may be misaligned
  • Protects a cracked tooth from further cracking

In many cases, our dentists have applied dental crowns in conjunction with other dental services. Some of most common of these dental crown utilizing services are:

Dental Crown For Root Canal

When infection takes hold in the inner part of the tooth, a root canal is often required if the tooth is to be saved. As the root canal requires the inner part of the tooth to be exposed so our dentists can clean out the infection, there is often not enough dental material left for a simple filling to be effective.

A dental crown can be created to cover the overly-exposed tooth after the root canal. The crown will act as the original tooth enamel and help protect the tooth from future infections.

Dental Crowns Used In Dental Implants

When a person missing a tooth or it is severely damaged, the person can choose to have that tooth replaced with a dental implant.

A dental implant has three parts: titanium post, abutment (top cap of the post where the dental crown rests), and crown. Once you have a dental implant placed by one of our dentists, you will be given time to heal before the crown is applied.

Dental Crowns And Dental Bridges

Whether you are choosing a traditional dental bridge or an implanted dental bridge, dental crowns play a key role in securing the dental bridge.

For a traditional dental bridge, dental crowns are created and placed on either end of the teeth-replacing bridge. Two of the natural teeth will be ground down and shaped to accommodate the dental crowns, which will be cemented into place with dental cement to secure the dental bridge.

With an implanted dental bridge, no teeth will be ground down or shaped. Instead, the dental crowns will be placed on top of two implanted posts to secure the dental bridge.

Other Dental Crown Factors

As you have many options when it comes to your dental work, there are a few more factors you may want to consider when looking into choosing dental crown placement.

  • Price – The cost of a single dental crown can be highly dependent on circumstances, ranging in price from $500-$3,000. Pricing is often affected by the dental procedures which may be needed before receiving a crown.
  • Durability – How long your dental crown will last will depend on several factors, such as the care given and what material is used to construct the crown. Take care around very cold or hot foods, as extreme temperatures can cause cracks in your dental crown.
  • Longevity – While excellent oral care can result in a longer lasting crown, the average lifespan of a dental crown is 10 years.

As dental work is highly dependent on the individual, our dentists are available to consult with you on your options and any concerns you may have about your dental work.

Receiving Your Dental Crown From Riverside Dental Care

Fitting a crown usually requires two appointments. During your first appointment, the tooth receiving the crown will be numbed. Once your tooth is numb, it is then reshaped so that the crown will fit securely over it. Once the tooth is the proper shape, we make an impression of it. This impression is sent to a top-quality dental lab, where a crown is custom-built to fit on top of your existing tooth and the teeth surrounding it.

When the impression is made, we will put a temporary crown over your tooth to protect it until the crown is ready. This temporary crown is inserted using temporary glue that holds it in place but allows it to be easily removed when your permanent crown is ready.

Please brush, but do not floss, this tooth between your first appointment and your second one. Your temporary crown is made so it can be treated like a regular tooth. However, even with the best of care, a temporary crown can come out. If this happens, please put a drop of Vaseline on it and replace it in your mouth. Even if you have to go a couple of days without the temporary crown, it will not create a serious problem. Simply, call our office the next business day and we will re-glue it for you.

No sedation is needed for your second visit. At this appointment, we will remove the temporary crown and secure your new crown in place. The dental cement used on the permanent crown is very strong and lasts for years. We will also check your new crown to make sure it fits properly and feels comfortable in your mouth.

Unless you encounter a problem, follow-up care will be provided at your regular dental checkups every six months. If you do encounter a complication with your crown, contact our office and let us know what has happened.

Our dentists are experienced professionals and have placed countless dental crowns. If you are interested in our dental crown services or any other dental service we offer, be sure to contact us for an appointment.