Dr. Shi's Dental Office

Crowns (Caps)

What is a dental crown?

A crown (or cap) is a type of tooth restoration which covers the entire tooth surface to restore its original shape and size.

Crowns can be made of porcelain, metal, or a combination of both.

Why you need a dental crown?

  • To restore a tooth to its original shape.
  • To strengthen a tooth.
  • To improve the cosmetic appearance of a tooth.

When a tooth is fractured, severely damaged by decay, has a large old filing, or after root canal treatment, a crown is often placed. A crown strengthens the tooth, protects the remaining tooth structure and can improve appearance.

What will the dentist do during crown (cap) procedure?

A crown procedure usually requires two appointments. Your first appointment will include cutting the tooth smaller to accommodate the cap; and taking several highly accurate molds (or impressions) that will be used to create your custom crown. A mold will also be used to create a temporary crown which will stay on your tooth for approximately two weeks until your new crown is fabricated by a dental laboratory.

At your second appointment your temporary crown will be removed, the tooth will be cleaned, and your new crown will be carefully placed to ensure the spacing and bite are accurate.

Precautions you should take after your crown:

  • Flossing and proper brushing.
  • Brush gently but thoroughly where the crown meets the gum.
  • Avoid hard food or ice.
  • Limit snacks.
  • See us regularly.
  • If continual discomfort is experienced after placement, contact us.

How long can dental crowns last?

It would be reasonable to expect that a crown could last between 5 and 15 years. Depending on the environment and forces the crown is exposed to (chewing, biting, accidental trauma, tooth grinding) and how well you keep the tooth to which it is cemented free of dental plaque.

Why do dental crowns need to be replaced?

  • Dental crown has become worn excessivelly.
  • Tooth decay has formed at the edge of the crown.
  • Dental crown has broken.
  • Dental crown's edge has become visible and it has a grey appearance.
  • Color of the crown no longer matches its neighboring teeth.

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