Dental Crown/Caps for Damaged Teeth

What is a Dental Crown?

A dental crown is ideal protecting a cracked, broken tooth or covering up tooth discolorations, crowns can be a great solution for improving your smile.

A crown is a tooth shaped cap that fits over a problem tooth to improve strength, size and appearance.

The crown procedure is relatively simple. First we will anesthetize the problem tooth area. Once completely numb, the tooth is filed down so that the crown fits appropriately. Then, we will take an impression of the tooth to use in the construction of the crown.

The impressions are sent away to a dental laboratory to create your crown; meanwhile, we apply a sturdy temporary crown over the problem tooth while your customary crown is manufactured. Once your customary crown is ready, you will return to Rolling Hills Dental and the crown will be applied. Now you have a bright, healthy-looking new tooth!

 

Dental Crown Treatment Palos Verdes CA

Crown placement can offer several benefits:

  • Long term durability
  • Protection from further decay, infection and cracking
  • Improved chewing and talking
  • An improved, natural and healthier smile

 

Types of Crowns Available at Rolling Hills Dental Group in the South Bay.

At Rolling Hills Dental Group we offer three different types of dental crowns:

  • All-Metal Crowns – These crowns are prepared solely with metal alloys. Although they possess excellent strength, they do not looks as natural as porcelain or ceramic crowns. Thus, they are reserved mostly the for restoration of posterior teeth, which are not typically visible.
  • All-Porcelain Crowns – These crowns look the most natural, since they are prepared from tooth colored ceramics. Patients who are extremely conscious about their smile and facial aesthetics usually select all porcelain crowns.These are used for restoring front teeth, and are popular in this area for their ability to blend with your natural tooth color.
  • Metal-Ceramic Crowns – These crowns combine the strength of metal crowns, and the excellent natural look of porcelain crowns. They contain a framework of metallic alloys, over which a layer of porcelain has been attached. This crown provides a stronger bond than regular porcelain because it is connected to a metal structure. It’s also extremely durable.

 

Here are the main differences of these crowns:

Durability is best in the gold and metal alloys crowns, whereas the all-porcelain crown tends to be less strong, more susceptible if it is put under enough pressure (if you grind your teeth at night, this may pose a problem). By contrast, the crown of porcelain fused to metal offers better durability. Both porcelain-based crowns are highly resistant to wear, but they can quickly aggravate opposing teeth if the adjacent surface becomes rough. Incidentally, the gold and metal alloys are resistant to wear and gentle on opposing teeth at the same time.

Though they sometimes become loose or fall out, crowns can last a lifetime if properly maintained. The best way to achieve this is through proper oral health. Brushing and flossing twice a day are your go-to methods of keeping your teeth healthy every morning and night.

 

Why and When to Crown a Tooth?

At Rolling Hills Dental, we recommend crowning a tooth when there is a:

  • A technical (restorative) requirement
  • A cosmetic requirement

Often times, both of these situations will be simultaneously satisfied with a crown.Therefore, the cosmetic effect will also be considered when restoring a tooth to it’s full function. This can include whitening the teeth and even lengthening them in certain cases. Luckily, this procedure doesn’t cause any pain in our patients.

 

Technical Requirements

At Rolling Hills Dental we may advise crowning your tooth in the following situations:

  • Weak teeth: If any of your teeth are weak, heavily worn down, cracked, or otherwise damaged, they can likely be saved if crowned if caught early.
  • Following root canal treatment: A restored tooth, especially after a root canal treatment, may be so weak that it will not be able to bear chewing during meals. In this situation, the tooth should be capped by one of our dentists.
  • Heavily filled teeth: If a tooth has been restored with a large filling but has left little original material, the tooth may not survive. Such a tooth must be crowned.
  • For a cosmetic adjustment. This would include:
  • Aesthetics – Crowns can improve the looks of badly shaped teeth.
  • Masking permanent teeth stains: Discolored teeth can also be covered by crowns.
  • Longevity:  Strong crowns can prove to be long lasting, and rarely, if ever, fall off.

Other possible applications would include:

  • To hold a bridge in place
  • To cover a dental implant

Dental crowns restore your ability to speak, improve your smile, and allow you to chew food properly.

 

Crowns for Children’s Teeth at Rolling Hills Dental

Normally, crowns are applied to permanent teeth. However, under certain conditions, baby teeth may also be crowned. One such situation is when a child is considered a high risk case for tooth decay. As an example, a tooth so badly damaged that it cannot safely support a filling would receive a dental crown.  There are different types of crowns available for children, your dentist at Rolling Hills Dental can advise you on the right choice for your son or daughter.

 

What Steps Are Involved in Preparing a Tooth for a Crown?

Preparing a tooth for a crown usually requires two visits to your dentist at Rolling Hills Dental — the first step involves examining and preparing the tooth, the second visit involves placement of the permanent crown.

First Visit: Examining and preparing the tooth.

At the first visit in preparation for a crown, your dentist may take a few X-rays to check the roots of the tooth receiving the crown and surrounding bone. If the tooth has extensive decay or if there is a risk of infection or injury to the tooth’s pulp, a root canal treatment may first be performed.

Before the process of making a crown begins, your dentist will anesthetize (numb) the tooth and the gum tissue around the tooth. Next, the tooth receiving the crown is filed down along the chewing surface and sides to make room for the crown. The amount removed depends on the type of crown used. If, on the other hand, a large area of the tooth is missing (due to decay or damage), your dentist will use filling material to “build up” the tooth to support the crown.

After reshaping the tooth, your dentist typically will use a paste or putty to make an impression of the tooth to receive the crown. Sometimes, though, impressions are made with a digital scanner. Impressions of the teeth above and below the tooth to receive the dental crown will also be made to make sure that the crown will not affect your bite.

The impressions or scans are sent to a dental lab where the crown will be manufactured. The crown is usually returned to your dentist’s office in two to three weeks. If the crown is made of porcelain, your dentist will also select the shade that most closely matches the color of the neighboring teeth. Your dentist may recommend teeth whitening prior to selecting the crown color. During this first office visit your dentist will make a temporary crown to cover and protect the prepared tooth while the crown is being made. Temporary crowns usually are made of acrylic and are held in place using a temporary cement.

Second Visit: Receiving the permanent dental crown.

At the second visit, your dentist will remove the temporary crown and check the fit and color of the permanent crown. If everything is acceptable, a local anesthetic will be used to numb the tooth and the new crown is permanently cemented in place.

 

Cost of Dental Crowns

Dental crowns range in price, typically based on the material being used. As both a cosmetic and practical addition to your mouth, the price is worth the cost. This means finding the right dentist to fit you with the best crown available at the right cost to you.  If you’re in The South Bay, then the closest choice (and the clearest) is with Dr. Jeff Goodman, Dr. Jerry Bottomley, Dr. Norton Donner or Dr. Kevin Lin and their staff at Rolling Hills Dental.

 

Life span and repair of crowns

Crowns, if they are properly maintained, may last a lifetime. Unfortunately, we sometimes see patients who have had poor quality dental work and as result, their crown was not properly fitted over the prepared tooth. If the crown does not fit well over the prepared tooth, bacteria will sometimes leak in and cause decay. If your crown seems loose when you chew, or if you have an unusual odor around the tooth, discuss this with us. We will check your crown immediately.

If the crown comes off, do not try to put in back in yourself as you may damage your natural tooth.  Place the crown in a secure, zip-top plastic bag. Then bring it to us. Most of the time a new crown needs to be made. The old crown may be able to be used as a temporary crown.

A beautiful, restored smile is awaiting you at Rolling Hills Dental Group. Our dentists, Dr. Jeff Goodman, Dr. Jerry Bottomley, Dr. Norton Donner or Dr. Kevin Lin at Rolling Hills Dental in  Southern California can help give you the gift of a new smile!

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