As people age, natural teeth begin to weaken and become more susceptible to decay, cracks and discoloration. During a routine visit, your dentist may notice that a tooth has become infected by decay or has become weakened or cracked and may recommend that he install a crown. A crown is used to help strengthen and protect a tooth from further decay.
Crowns can be made from a variety of materials, specifically porcelain, porcelain fused to metal, or a full gold crown. To create a more natural look and feel, a porcelain-finished crown is best. A porcelain crown can easily be matched to the shade of your natural teeth, allowing it to blend in better.
Placing of a crown can take 2 to 3 visits to your dentist. During the first visit, the tooth that is to receive the crown will be shaped by filing away some of the existing enamel. This will allow the crown to fit precisely over the existing tooth. The patient will receive a local anesthetic during this part of the procedure so there is no discomfort. When the tooth is reshaped, a mold will be taken and sent to the dental lab for fabrication. The crown will fit over the existing tooth and will look the same relative to the surrounding teeth. Before leaving the office, your dentist will provide you with a temporary crown until the permanent crown is ready.
In 2 to 3 weeks, the permanent crown will be ready. The patient will receive a local anesthetic to numb the area before the crown will be placed on the tooth using a cement to ensure the crown stays in place.
You will have a brand new smile when you look in the mirror the next morning. Crowns are durable and should last a minimum of 10 years. Some may last as many as 20. Care for your crown as you would your natural teeth. Brush and floss regularly and use an antiseptic mouthwash to rinse. Call Columbia Dental Care & Associates today at (407) 606-8454 if you would like to learn more about crowns and how they can help restore your smile.