A crown (or cap) is a covering that encases the entire tooth surface restoring it to a natural shape and size. A crown protects and strengthens teeth that cannot be restored with fillings or other types of restorations.
Since they resemble your natural teeth, porcelain tooth colored crowns are the most popular. They are strong and durable and will last many years with proper care. However, like most dental restorations, they may eventually need to be replaced. Porcelain crowns are made to match the shape, size, and color of your teeth giving you a natural, long-lasting, beautiful smile.
You may need a crown to repair badly decayed teeth, broken teeth or old fractured fillings. You will also need a crown after you have had a root canal or for cosmetic reasons to replace darkened or misshaped natural teeth.
Getting a crown usually requires two appointments:
- At your first appointment the Dentist or assistant will take several impressions that will be used to create your custom crown. After you are comfortable and your tooth is completely numb, the dentist will remove decay and shape your tooth for the crown. When this is complete a temporary crown will be placed on your tooth until your permanent crown is returned from the dental lab one to two weeks later.
- At your second appointment (often called the "crown seat" appointment) your beautiful new crown will be permanently bonded on the prepared tooth. Your dentist will carefully check the spacing and bite of your new crown to make sure it will be strong and comfortable. You will be given care instructions and encouraged to have regular dental visits for cleanings and to check on your new crown.