Dental Crowns Procedure

Dental crowns, also known as caps, are made out of porcelain material that your dentist fits over a tooth for both restorative and cosmetic purposes. There are times when a dentist will recommend a crown to protect a tooth and to restore its function, and other times to improve the appearance of your smile. Many people believe that in order to receive a crown, you must first have a root canal procedure performed, but a root canal is not the only type of treatment for which a dental crown procedure may be required.  Some other common scenarios for which a crown is recommended are the protection of a tooth from a large cavity (decay), restoration of broken or weakened teeth, replacement of a tooth (implants), and anchoring of a bridge. Below, you will find a detailed explanation for the purpose of a dental crown. 

    1. Protecting a weak tooth. When a tooth’s enamel is weak, it is prone to break or crack due to decay. Placing a crown on a tooth with weak enamel will keep a tooth from breaking and hold together an already cracked tooth. 
    2. To anchor a dental bridge. Dental bridges are used to fill in the spaces left by missing teeth. Typically, a crown will be placed on each end to anchor the bridge in place. 
    3. To cover a dental implant. If you have a missing tooth, your dentist can replace the tooth with a dental implant. There are three parts to a dental implant: the implant post (the foundation), the abutment (the base), and the crown (the artificial tooth that replaces the original tooth). 
    4. To improve the appearance of your smile.  Are you dissatisfied with the color or shape of your tooth, or do you have a chipped tooth? A dentist can place a dental crown over your tooth to improve its appearance. Placing a crown over a tooth is one of the safest and stable methods to enhance the appearance of a tooth. 
    5. To rebuild an abscessed tooth. If you are experiencing an abscessed or an infected tooth, your dentist can perform a root canal procedure. In order to remove the infected tissue, a large hole will be drilled in the tooth. This typically leaves the tooth weak, and can result in you needing a crown placed on the tooth for protection.
    6. To support decayed teeth. Oftentimes, when a tooth has excessive decay, your dentist will recommend a dental crown. When there is too much decay, your tooth can’t support a filling and will need a crown instead.
Dental Crown
fitzhugh - before and after - crowns

What Types of Dental Crowns are Available at Your Office?

At each of our dental offices, we provide porcelain crowns to our patients. Porcelain crowns are known to be the more natural and aesthetically pleasing option over other crown materials such as metal. Your dentist will match the color of the porcelain crown to your natural teeth. Not only are they cosmetically a better option, but they reduce sensitivity compared to metal crowns. 

What is the Process?

The application of a dental crown will typically be performed within two visits to the dentist. At your first appointment, your dentist will examine and prepare the tooth. In preparation of your dental crown procedure, a few x-rays will be taken to check the roots and surrounding bone of the tooth that is receiving the crown. The dentist will numb your tooth and the surrounding gum tissue. The tooth receiving the crown is reshaped to make room for the crown. Next, impressions will be taken of the tooth, along with impressions of the teeth above and below the tooth receiving the crown to ensure it will not interfere with your bite. Once the shade of your permanent crown is determined, the impressions are sent to a dental lab. It typically takes two to three weeks to receive the permanent crown. Your dentist will create a temporary crown for you to wear until your permanent crown is completed. A few precautions you’ll need to take while wearing your temporary crown are to chew on the opposite side of your mouth and to avoid sticky or crunchy food. 

At your second appointment, your temporary crown will be removed by your dentist. Your dentist will then verify the shade and fit of the permanent crown. If it’s a perfect match, your dentist will then perform the final stage in the dental crown procedure by permanently cementing the crown into place. 

Aftercare Instructions 

You will care for your permanent crown as you would your natural teeth. Be sure to maintain your dental check-ups, so your dentist can detect any problems with your crown early on. It is common to experience sensitivity to cold and heat after crown placement. However, if this symptom does not go away after a week or two, please give your dentist a call. If you are experiencing the following after a dental crown process, contact your office: 

  1. Sharp or rough spots on the crown 
  2. Pain while chewing 
  3. Pain in your jaw or head
  4. Sensitivity or pain while you bite down 
  5. Chipped or loose crown 

5-year Warranty on Your Crown 

At Higginbotham Family Dental, we provide a 5-year warranty on our patients’ dental crowns. As long as you keep up with your regular hygiene appointments at our office, you will maintain your warranty! 

Schedule Your Dental Appointment 

Are you suffering from chipped, cracked, or discolored teeth? Or perhaps you’re experiencing pain or discomfort? While it may be tempting to search for “dental crowns near me” it’d be best to trust a qualified professional with the health of your teeth. At Higginbotham Family Dental, our highly trained and experienced team of dentists is committed to providing excellent dental care and personalized attention to you and your family. Our focus on high-quality care has earned us not only an outstanding reputation but also a high number of referrals. In fact, more than 80% of our new patients come from referrals. 

For extraordinary dental care and treatments call Higginbotham Family Dental to schedule your appointment.