Learn more about how Crowns can help you achieve your desired smile at Envisage Dental
What are Dental Crowns?
A dental crown is a cover made in the shape of a tooth, to go over a tooth right down to the gum line. Its purpose is to restore the tooth’s appearance, function and strength.
Why do I need a crown?
Your dentist will advise you to get a crown to cover your tooth if your tooth
- is very weak due to decay or heavy bite;
- is heavily broken down due to heavy bite;
- is cracked as a result of grinding or accident;
- has root canal treatment; or
- is discoloured
A crown is also used to support a bridge and to go over a dental implant.
Types of crowns
There are different types of crown depending on the material used to construct the crown – all metal, porcelain fused to metal, all porcelain – in the order of strength, from the strongest to the weakest.
What type of crown is good for me?
The choice of crown is very much determined by the position of the tooth receiving the crown. Dentists will most likely advise an all porcelain crown for a front tooth where aesthetic is of the utmost importance. A metal crown is strong and good for providing strength and protection to a molar when it is in an obscured position in the mouth. Your dentist can give you the best advice on the type of crown suitable for your situation.
How is a crown made?
In making a metal crown and a porcelain fused to metal crown, you will need 2 visits to the dentist.
At the first visit, the tooth will receive local anaesthetic if it has not been root treated. The tooth is then prepared to a shape that enough room is given to sit the crown over it. Then, the dentist will use a putty to take an impression of all your teeth so that the construction of the crown can be done by the lab technician using the impression. The colour of the teeth is checked and recorded for the technician to produce a crown that can match the other teeth. The dentist will also construct a temporary crown made either of tooth colour acrylic or metal, to cover the tooth that he/she has just prepared. The temporary crown is cemented with a temporary cement. The temporary crown is necessary to cover and protect the tooth for 1 to 2 weeks when the crown is being made. At the second visit, the properly constructed crown will be checked for fit and bite before it is cemented onto the tooth with a strong cement.
In our practice, our dentists utilize CAD/CAM to construct a full porcelain crown. This is accomplished in one visit. We only require approximately 2 to 4 hours to get you from nothing to having a completely personalised crown or onlay fitted exactly for your mouth. The total chair time required of you is approximately 1 hour. The rest of the time is for the CAD/CAM machine to produce the crown or onlay. CAD/CAM machines also enable our dentists to rapidly iterate on the crown or onlay, to make sure that it suits your needs exactly.
What sort of problems can I have with a crown?
After investing the money and time to receive a crown over your tooth, you would definitely want to keep it for good. You will need to take good care of it just like all your other teeth with proper brushing and flossing before bed. Decay can still set in around the crown margins if you do not clean around it. Regular check-up by your dentist is important to make sure there is no decay initiating around the crown margins. Porcelain crowns and porcelain fused to metal crowns can chip in heavy bite situation. This is especially easy to happen in people who grind their teeth during sleep. Please take the dentist’s advice if you are asked to wear a night guard to protect your teeth and the newly constructed crown.