ABCs of Dental Crowns

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What is a dental crown?

The dental crown is a cap placed over a tooth and it is shaped like a tooth. The purpose of the crown is to restore the shape and size and strength of the tooth or to improve its appearance.

The visible portion of a tooth above the gum line will be fully encased by the crowns once they are cemented properly.

What is the purpose of providing dental crowns?

The dental crowns are provided under the following circumstances.

What are the various types of materials used for making dental crowns?

Dental crowns are made from all metal, porcelain-fused-to-metal, ceramic, resin etc. Details are given below.

What are temporary and permanent dental crowns?

Temporary crowns are crowns that can be made in your dentist's office and normally they are made out of acrylic. Permanent crowns are crowns that are made in a dental laboratory. Temporary crowns are used as a temporary restoration until the dental laboratory makes a permanent crown using any of the above said materials.

How many visits are required for preparing and fixing a dental crown?

This procedure normally requires two visits to your dentists. During the first visit your dentist takes x-rays to find out the root conditions of the tooth that is to be provided with a crown. In case the root is decayed extensively he might perform root canal treatment. Otherwise he will do the following.

During your second visit, your dentist your dentist will replace the temporary crown with a permanent crown if the fit and color match of the permanent crown are satisfactory. He will administer a local anesthetic while cementing the new crown permanently in position.

What are the precautions that you should take regarding temporary crowns?

The following are the precautions that you should take when you are fitted with temporary crowns.

What are the likely problems you might face with dental crowns?

You might face the following problems when you are fitted with dental crowns.

What do you understand by Onlays and 3/4 Crowns?

In addition to the technique of dental crowns given above there are other techniques such as Onlays and 3/4 crowns. Basically they differ in the extent of coverage of the underlying tooth. The conventional technique covers the whole tooth whereas Onlays and 3/4 crowns cover the underlying tooth to a lesser extent.

What is the life of Dental crowns?

The average life of a dental crown varies from 5 to 15 years. This life span is dependent on the following.

Should you take any special care for a crowned tooth?

No special care is required for a crowned tooth. You must realize that the underlying tooth cannot be protected from gum disease or decay just by crowning it. Hence you must follow good oral hygiene practices.

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