A Crown is a fabricated helmet that is bonded to a prepared tooth to protect it from fracture or as an aesthetic solution. Often people mistakingly refer to Crowns as “caps”.
A tooth may be compromised and require a crown if subject to:
Extensive decay – requiring a complex (large) filling
Trauma – broken teeth
Root Therapy – this causes the tooth to become brittle over time
Less than ideal aesthetics
Crowns are often tooth coloured (using porcelain) so they are matched to look as natural as possible next to your own teeth. Metallic crowns are also used in some circumstances, or a mixture of both materials.
2-3 visits are normally required to have Crown Therapy completed.
The preparation appointment normally takes 30mins – 2 hours (depending on how many teeth are being prepared). The tooth is prepared and impressions are taken to send to a ceramic laboratory. A local anaesthetic will be required at this appointment.
Occassionally, patients are urged to visit the ceramics laboratory in order to have the colour of your natural teeth electronically measured for optimal aesthetic results.
Temporary crowns are fabricated for the period between preperation and insert. Because they are “temporary” they have low durability so it is advised to avoid chewing gum or hard foods on that side. It is important to maintain normal brushing and flossing around the temporary crown (instead of pulling the floss “up”, however, we recommend you pull it out from the side). Your dentist will show you how to clean if you are unsure.
The insert appointment normally takes 30mins. The crown is tried in and if the dentist and patient are happy, it is inserted. While the cement sets it is advisable not to eat for 1-3hours.
Occasionally, the Crown requires adjusting and may need to be sent back to the laboratory and so, unfortunately, you may not get the crown at the anticipated insert appointment.
It is often advisable to have an Occlusal Splint / Nightguard made after crown therapy in order to protect them and the adjacent teeth from premature wear and/or fracture caused by grinding during sleep.