When a tooth’s structure has decayed to the point where a filling isn’t enough, your dentist may recommend a crown or cap. A crown is a covering that encases the entire tooth surface, restoring it to its original shape and size, and protecting and strengthening it.
Crowns are generally considered for teeth that are broken or fractured, have large or fractured fillings, have undergone a root canal, or are heavily decayed. They are also sometimes used for cosmetic enhancement. Crowns are highly durable, but may eventually need replacing.
Porcelain crowns are the most popular, as they are made to match the shape, size, and color of your teeth. They are also durable, lasting many years before replacements are needed.
Getting a Crown
The standard fitting for a crown takes two appointments; one to take impressions to make a natural mold of the tooth, and a second to get it fitted and attached correctly. While the molds are being made, you’ll be given a temporary crown that will last from 2 to 4 weeks, and the dentist will check to make sure your bite is correct with the provisional tooth.
At the second appointment, your temporary crown will be removed, the surface below will be cleaned and the new molded tooth put in place with permanent glue. After everything is in place, the dentist will give further care instructions and also discuss how often to schedule routine checkups for your crown.