When the top portion of a tooth has been damaged or you are replacing multiple teeth, you are going to need a dental crown to cover it. A crown can make a damaged or deficient tooth look new, and ceramic crownsprovide the most natural look.
When Crowns Are Used
A dental crown has many purposes. They are used to restore the visible portion of teeth that have become damaged or have other problems and may otherwise need to be extracted. Some instances include:
- To beautify a tooth (discolored or malformed)
- To strengthen a weak tooth
- To repair a broken tooth
- To attach a bridge
- To cover a root canal
- To cover a dental implant
Types of Crowns
Ceramic crownscome in three different types. Each one has some benefits and possibly some problems. The types include:
When you want the most natural-looking crown possible, a crown that is 100 percent ceramic will easily beat other types. The solid porcelain enables the light to go into and reflect from the tooth in a most natural-looking way. Better all-ceramic ones involve a manufacturing process that places different types of ceramics with differing shades at different levels of the crown. A problem is that it is more brittle than other types and may chip.
- Porcelain Fused to Metal (PFM)
This type of dental crown is stronger than the all-ceramic one because it is fused to a metal base. Although the ceramic used is stronger, it can wear on the opposing teeth more than the all-ceramic ones. A potential problem with this type is that there is a dark metal base around the tooth. When placed, the base is hidden by the gums, but if your gums recede, the dark-colored base will become visible.
- Milled Ceramics
Some dentists have a milling machine in their office that enables them to make crowns on the spot. These only take about 15 minutes to make and they can be placed immediately. The machine starts with a solid block of ceramic and then mills it to the given specifications. Crowns made in this way are solid in color but developers are getting better at enabling them to look more translucent and in a variety of colors. This material is extremely strong and is excellent for molars. Because of its strength, it can also be used with people who grind their teeth in their sleep.
Dental crowns will also vary considerably in price. Be sure to understand the cost involved before deciding on a particular type. In most cases, the ability to repair a crown made of ceramic is very limited.
Care of Teeth with Crowns
A tooth with a crown needs the same dental care as your regular teeth. Although the crown cannot decay, remember that the tooth under it still can – and the gums can develop gum disease. Brushing twice a day and flossing is necessary to protect your teeth – whether ceramic or not.
The Bright White Dental office can provide you with beautiful ceramic crowns of different types. Our friendly dentists provide a wide variety of dental services for people of every age.