Do you have severely damaged, cracked, or altogether broken teeth? Dental crowns can give you the straight, radiant smile you’ve always wanted.
Located in Cabot AR, the practice of Samuel F. Jirik, DDS is proud to offer sophisticated dental solutions to patients in the Ward, Beebe, Jacksonville, Sherwood, Vilonia, and Little Rock areas. For more information about our practice or any of the services we offer, contact us today!
What Is A Dental Crown, And What Is The Benefit Of Having One?
A crown covers the entire visible portion of the damaged tooth. They are also used as anchors (abutments) for bridges, placed on the teeth on each side of the gap. At one time, crowns were often referred to as “caps.” This was when they were primarily made of gold alloy. Crowns are fabricated in a dental lab based on impressions taken by the dentist after some of the natural tooth is removed to make room for the overlying crown. Crowns can be made from dental porcelain, which is the preferred option for Dr. Jirik, or from gold, palladium, nickel, and chromium. Composite resin isn’t used to make crowns, as it doesn’t have the requisite strength.
Dr. Jirik thinks of dental crowns as tooth lifesavers. When he places a crown over a thoroughly damaged tooth, such as a tooth with extensive decay or a deep crack, the crown returns strength to the tooth, enabling the patient to keep the tooth. Otherwise, the tooth would be in danger of needing extraction, as its strength would be compromised.
If you’re dealing with only a single tooth or two, placing crowns is a better alternative to the cosmetic treatments of applying porcelain veneers or covering the tooth with composite resin in bonding. Crowns are stronger, and they can last for decades. Veneers and bonding don’t last anywhere near that long.
Crowns can be placed over teeth that have been ground down through nightly bruxism. They can completely change the appearance of a misshapen, deeply stained, or otherwise cosmetically flawed tooth. Plus, crowns serve as the anchors for our dental bridges.
Why Should I Choose To Get Dental Crowns?
Dental crowns are an excellent solution for patients interested in restoring damaged or misshapen teeth to a normal shape, size, and color. While porcelain veneers only cover the front of teeth, crowns fit over them completely. This increased alteration is necessary when teeth are several damaged.
What Concerns Can a Crown Correct?
Dental crowns provide patients with many excellent benefits, including:
- Corrects damaged or broken teeth
- Hides the results of teeth grinding
- Provides extra protection for teeth after an extensive filling
- Prevents the spread of tooth decay
- Strengthens tooth after root canal surgery
Who Is A Good Candidate For Dental Crowns?
The question of needing a crown or not can be functional or aesthetic. If you have a tooth that has cosmetic problems — maybe it was stained by a reaction to tetracycline when you were a kid — then a crown is a great way to mask that staining. However, a porcelain veneer could also do the job in this case.
But if your tooth has extensive decay or other damage and is in danger of needing to be extracted, then a crown is the perfect way to save the tooth.
If you have signs of gum disease, you’ll have to address that first before you can have a crown placed.
The Dental Crown Procedure
Cosmetic crowns are put on teeth in two stages. During the first stage, Dr. Jirik will prepare your affected tooth for a crown. He’ll do so by first cleaning it and then reshaping it with a small drill. This ensures that the tooth remaining is in a strong, stable condition and will be able to support the crown. During this stage, Dr. Jirik will also take a mold for your tooth to be used in the creation of your crown.
Between stage one and stage two, you will have to go about your daily life with your affected tooth visible. Some patients choose to have temporary dental crowns put on their teeth between these visits, so their reshaped tooth will not be visible.
During stage two, the new crown is fitted on the affected tooth. Before putting on the crown, Dr. Jirik will etch the surface of the affected tooth, making it rougher. This roughness helps the dental cement bond with the crown more securely. Once this is done, Dr. Jirik will place the crown over your tooth, making sure that it is fixed into a proper position.
Cosmetic crowns can be an extremely effective way to repair, restore, and renew your smile. Interested in a cosmetic crown but not certain you’re a candidate for one? Contact the office of Samuel F. Jirik today to schedule your consultation appointment today.
How Are Dental Crows Placed?
Placing a crown requires two appointments with Dr. Jirik. During the first appointment, we’ll give you IV sedation to keep you comfortable as we prepare the tooth for your crown. First, Dr. Jirik removes any decay and damaged tooth material. Next, the healthy exterior of the tooth is shaved down on all sides and on the top to create room for the crown to overlay the tooth. We then take impressions and photographs of your teeth to create a blueprint for the lab to use to manufacture your crown. The lab needs to make the crown to the shape of your original tooth (before it was shaved down), minus defects such as chips and the like. Plus, the crown needs to match the color of your adjacent teeth if it is being made from porcelain. Fabricating your crown takes around two weeks, so Dr. Jirik places a temporary crown on the tooth to protect it until the permanent crown is finished.
When your crown is finished, you return for your second appointment. The process of placing your new crown is painless, so you won’t need any sedation for this appointment. We clean your teeth and then Dr. Jirik checks your new crown for fit and for the match to the adjacent teeth. If need be, he’ll adjust the underlying tooth or shave a bit from the crown. Once both of you are satisfied, the crown is cemented permanently onto your tooth, and you’re finished. No recovery is needed, as you can eat normal foods as soon as you leave our office.
Do I Need To Provide Special Care For My Dental Crown?
Your beautiful new crown requires no special care, just attentive brushing and flossing every day. It’s a good idea to be sure to work around the bottom of the crown to be sure to remove any food particles. If you remove plaque and food debris from your teeth, your crown can last for decades.
How Long Can I Expect My Dental Crown To Last?
Dental crowns can last for decades, but their endurance is often tied directly to your home hygiene. After all, the crown cannot decay, but the tooth underneath it still can. Other bad habits such as chewing ice and biting your fingernails can shorten the lifespan of a crown.
Will I Need To Restrict My Diet With A Dental Crown?
There aren’t any restrictions on what you can eat with a crown on a tooth or teeth, but you can pull a crown off with overly sticky, chewy foods like caramels. If this does happen, however, Dr. Jirik can place the crown back on the tooth.
Are There Any Risks Associated With Getting A Dental Crown?
These are non-invasive procedures. There aren’t any incisions, so there isn’t any risk for infection. There really isn’t any risk to placing a crown on a tooth. The real risk would be to save a few bucks and leave a severely damaged tooth untreated. Without a crown that tooth will likely one day need to be extracted.
Does A Crown Ruin Your Tooth?
Far from it — crowns actually save a tooth or teeth in danger of needing extraction. In cases where the tooth has extensive decay, a large chip, or a deep crack, the health of the tooth will continue to decline. Without having a crown placed on the tooth, this will likely lead to one day needing to have it extracted.
It is true that Dr. Jirik has to shave down the tooth on all sides and the top to make room for the crown to overlay the entire tooth. This means the tooth will always need a dental crown on it, but this doesn’t “ruin” the tooth in any way.