If you take good care of your teeth, chances are you’ve been to the dentist in the last six months. However, your dentist can often deliver the nerve-racking news that you’re due for a dental implant. One of the most common dental restoration procedures is placing a dental crown in a tooth that needs reconstruction. Picking suitable material for your molars or front teeth is essential in any dental practice.
If you’re unsure of what to expect or how to pick the type of dental crown that is right for you, your aesthetic, and your needs, Brock North Dental has created this guide to help you identify the different types of crowns, their uses, and the most common issues you can encounter after this procedure. Your dentist will always advise you on the best course of action for your teeth and will educate you on what to expect before and after crown placement.
What are dental crowns?
Dental crowns are a tooth restoration or implant procedure where a “cap” is placed on top of a damaged tooth. Upon covering it, the tooth is supported by these crowns and made to mimic your tooth’s original shape. Dental crowns come in varying shapes, sizes, and colors. They are custom-made to the ideal shape and appearance of the person undergoing the procedure to make the implant look natural.
What are the types of dental crowns?
As we stated before, dental crowns vary in shape, size, and color but also in material. Nowadays, the most popular dental crowns are made of porcelain or ceramic because they look more similar to your teeth. The most common types of dental crown implants are the following:
As far as durable tooth implants go, metal crowns last the longest and are significantly more durable. They can be crafted from metal materials like gold, palladium, nickel, chromium, and even stainless steel. Sometimes these crowns can be temporarily used in place of porcelain or ceramic implants while your dentist’s office is crafting proper ones. However, the main drawback of metal crowns is the color.
Metal dental crowns can’t mimic the color of your teeth, so they are typically chosen for molars and back teeth where the metal won’t be visible. Though highly resistant, their longevity makes them more expensive than your standard crown.
Porcelain is the current most popular option in dentistry. They are a good choice for people with metal allergies and those looking for aesthetically pleasing crown options. They offer the best natural color match compared to other crown types.
This type of dental crown can also match the color of the teeth next to it. They are more durable than pure porcelain because of the metal layer underneath. However, this metal cap can be seen as a dark line under the tooth. The material is strong but can chip and expose the metal beneath.
Resin crowns are less expensive than other dental crown types, but don’t get it twisted—resin crowns are known for being less durable and more likely to break than porcelain and metal crowns. They wear faster over time and are becoming less popular.
Ceramic & Pressed Ceramic
Ceramic crowns are the best option for your front teeth. Pressed ceramic dental crowns are capped with porcelain, which gives them a natural color and are longer lasting than an all-porcelain crown.
Recent advances in dentistry have given porcelain and ceramic crowns a comparable strength to other materials, making them a preferred option among patients who require a tooth crown procedure.
What are the uses of dental crowns?
Your dentist may recommend a dental crown when your tooth needs to improve its strength and function because of tooth decay and other problems like trauma or a fracture. They are used as reconstructive implants to anchor a bridge between teeth. The types of dental crowns mentioned above can be used to:
- Repair a cavity-damaged tooth.
- Cover a tooth after a root canal therapy.
- Fix discolored or poorly shaped teeth.
- Replace a missing tooth.
Reasons your dentist might recommend a dental crown
If something is going on with the structure or functionality of your tooth, one of the procedures your dentist might recommend is a dental crown. There are many reasons why dentists advise on crown placements, but the most common ones include the following:
- For cosmetic purposes, after a tooth is damaged by trauma or a fracture
- When decay or cavities have weakened your tooth.
- To replace a filling in your molar or other teeth.
- To protect a natural tooth that is susceptible to damage.
- To align your bite.
- To protect your tooth after a root canal procedure.
An x-ray will often be performed to diagnose and determine what procedure is right for you and ensure your crown is fitted correctly. If you have a damaged tooth that is causing you pain or discomfort, both physically and psychologically, you should seek a dentist as soon as possible.
What are common issues with dental crowns?
Like any other implant or dentistry procedure, crowns can come with complications and issues. Though they are usually minor, you should always look for side effects and discomfort after dental crown placement. Some cases to watch for are:
- Tooth decay, mainly when plaque accumulates underneath the crown junction. This promotes the accumulation of bacteria and gum disease.
- Poor placement or loosening. It’s not uncommon to encounter this issue, but if you feel your crown hasn’t been adjusted right or is not properly fitted on your tooth, contact your dentist as soon as possible.
- Allergic reactions to the material or cement used to bind the crown to your tooth.
- Teeth sensitivity from the shaved enamel. During a crown placement, your dental enamel is shaved down to the dentin, which can cause acute tooth sensitivity while adjusting to your new implant.
- Graying gums is particularly common in people with metal dental crowns. It means the metal is showing through the gum line, and it’s never a cause for concern, but if it’s aesthetically displeasing, you can always book an appointment with your dentist and have the metal implant replaced with a natural-looking crown.
- Chipped crowns from constant wear and use. Crowns that don’t have a metal interior tend to wear down from continuous chewing. However, your dentist can patch the damaged crown with a dental filling (or a replacement).
- Nerve pain, while uncommon, can happen. If you are experiencing pain from your implant, it’s always best to contact your dentist to ensure you won’t need to replace your crown or have a root canal procedure.
Different types of dental crowns to fit your needs
Dental crowns and implants are crucial pieces of reconstructive dentistry procedures. Whether you are experiencing tooth decay, have broken teeth, need to align your bite, or are looking to improve the aesthetic of your smile, your local dentist will assist you in deciding which type of dental crown is appropriate to tackle your problem. Porcelain is the most popular material, but metal and resin implants are still available to the public. Always consult your dentist and ask for alternative treatment options before undergoing any procedure.
Are you experiencing dental troubles?
Brock North Dental’s expert team of dentistry professionals will be more than happy to assist you. If you think you require a dental crown placement, we have the expertise in implant dentistry you are looking for. Visit us at 2200 Brock Road in Pickering, Ontario, or call (905) 427-7773 today to book your appointment.