Damage to your teeth can happen due to a variety of circumstances. You could fall and hit your mouth, or you might bite down on something too hard. Damage can also be caused by auto accidents or other hits to the face. No matter how damage occurs, it can have a major impact on your oral health and your smile. At National Dental Melville, we can help to restore your smile (and the health of your mouth) with dental crowns.
WHAT ARE DENTAL CROWNS?
Some damage to your teeth can do more than just mar your smile. Damage can also compromise the health of your mouth, allowing bacteria to enter the structure of your tooth and cause an infection. It can also put your tooth at risk for further damage, such as splitting or shattering. A dental crown is a “cap” that restores your tooth. It provides a damaged tooth strength and protects it, avoiding the need for an extraction. Some crowns can also restore the aesthetics of your smile as well.
What are They Made From?
There are a few different materials that are used for dental crowns:
- Metal. Metal crowns are the strongest crowns available. They are practically indestructible and can last over 50 years. They have been in use the longest. They can withstand the most bite pressures, making them popular for the teeth at the back of your mouth. However, despite their benefits, there are a few drawbacks. Metal crowns are gold or silver in color, making them very noticeable, and not aesthetically pleasing. Metal crowns can also cause reactions in those with allergies.
- Porcelain fused to metal. PFM crowns have a metal base that surrounds your teeth with a porcelain exterior. The metal provides strength, while the porcelain matches the color of your natural teeth. However, there is a thin metal line that usually shows at the base of the crown, which can give it away. These crowns are also not ideal for those allergic to metals.
- Ceramic. Ceramic crowns provide the best aesthetic option. The material can be finished to match the color of your natural teeth, and it imitates the light reflecting properties of enamel. While ceramic may not be as strong as metal, it can withstand normal biting and chewing forces and is the ideal option for visible teeth.
Placing Your Dental Crowns
The process for getting your dental crowns typically takes two visits. During the first visit, we will need to remove some of the enamel of the affected tooth. This is done under a local anesthetic. Removing the enamel allows your restoration to fit in perfectly with the rest of your teeth. Next, an impression is taken, which is sent to our lab. Your crown will be designed and fabricated there. This can take up to two weeks so that you will be provided with a temporary crown in the meantime. The temporary crown will protect your tooth while you wait. When the final crown is ready, we check it for proper fit and cement it in place.
Dental Crown Benefits
Dental crowns have several benefits:
- Ceramic perfectly matches the rest of your natural teeth.
- They provide a damaged tooth with strength and protection.
- They can be used following a root canal to prevent new infections from occurring.
- They can also be used to anchor a dental bridge or cover a screw of a dental implant.
If your smile has been affected by damage to your teeth, dental crowns may be able to help. Call National Dental Melville today at (631) 816-2277 to schedule your consultation.