02 Jun What Are Dental Crowns & Do They Need Replacing?
What Are Dental Crowns & Do They Need Replacing?
Dental crowns are coverings placed over the enamel of a damaged tooth. The function of a crown is to hide the part of a tooth which can be seen above the gum structure.
They are a protective cap to improve the health of a decayed or broken tooth, making it stronger and preventing future removal. Crowns are usually required when the tooth structure is not sufficient for supporting a filling.
Dental crowns can be made from a range of materials, which impact how long the crown will last. In this article, find out about the different types of dental crowns, the dental crown procedure and if your dental crowns need replacement.
Types of Dental Crowns
There are a variety of materials that dental crowns can be made of, with pros and cons to each. However, ceramic crowns are gro
wing in popularity due to their natural look and feel – they don’t contain any metal and are the most aesthetically natural. Different types of crowns include:
- Zirconia crowns – a type of ceramic crown that’s typically the strongest and most natural-looking material.
- Ceramic crowns – these do not have a metal core, so are often the most aesthetically appealing.
- Porcelain crowns – front teeth crowns are best made of porcelain.
- Porcelain bonded crowns – porcelain merged on top of a metal core. The front and back teeth are often best restored with these crowns.
- Gold crowns – made from a combination of gold and different metal alloys.
Crowns used to be commonly made of gold, and even though they provided an accurate fit, the colour of the crown was an issue. Today, the majority of the crowns are made of ceramic, porcelain or a combination of metals.
Dental Crown Procedure
Typically, the dentist will take an impression of the tooth and a dental technician will create the crown. The technician will develop a crown that perfectly fits the tooth. The dentist will then place the crown on the tooth. All up, the procedure should be complete within two visits.
Are Dental Crowns Painful?
Luckily, getting a crown is not painful – you may simply experience mild discomfort. Moreover, the potential discomfort of the procedure is far less than the potential pain of an infection or tooth extraction.
Here at Brisbane Smiles, we also offer Sedation Dentistry for those who require it.
How Long Do Crowns On Teeth Last?
The lifespan of a crown is usually between 5 to 15 years, or up to a lifetime. How long your crown lasts will depend on factors such as your oral hygiene, how often you visit the dentist and the materials they are made of.
- Zirconia or gold crowns can last up to a lifetime.
- Porcelain crowns can last up to 15 years.
- Metal crowns can last up to 15 years.
The lifespan of a crown can be extended with good oral hygiene. General wear and tear, regular biting and chewing, teeth grinding (Bruxism) or biting into hard substances can cause damage to your crown.
What Happens When Crowns Get Old?
Over time, a crown goes through wear and tear due to exposure to bacteria and plaque. Dark root canals or metal in crowns can also form a greyish layer around the gums.
Old or worn crowns can weaken and may lead to cracking or rupture. When a crown is cracked, there is a possibility of a tooth infection or decay under the crown. It’s important to visit your dentist once every six months to examine your oral health and assess the state of your crowns.
Do Old Crowns Need to Be Replaced?
Considering the wear and tear that crowns can encounter over time, your dentist may suggest replacing an old crown with a new one. As a broken, worn or ruptured crown can lead to infection or decay, it’s important to replace it promptly.
Replacing a crown follows a similar procedure to the original crown. Only now, the old crown must be removed first. The tooth will be adequately prepared by your dentist, who may perform any necessary work to the tooth underneath before replacing the crown.
Prevent Tooth Decay With a Dental Crown
Don’t put off dental crown treatment – get a new crown or replace an old crown with the Brisbane Smiles experts. Be sure to get in touch with our friendly team to discuss your treatment options today.