WHAT ARE DENTAL CROWNS?
A dental crown, colloquially known as a tooth cap, is a type of restorative dental prosthesis that fits over the top portion of the tooth. A dental crown is given to restore a damaged tooth to its appropriate shape, size and strength and ensure proper functioning. Dental crowns happen to be one of the most common forms of restorative dental treatment in Markham.
TYPES OF DENTAL CROWNS
1. BASE-METAL ALLOY CROWNS
Historically, dental crowns were made of metal to ensure durability and strength. Base-metal alloy dental crowns are made from stainless steel or alloys of nickel, titanium, chromium and cobalt. These crowns offer excellent strength and durability, making them highly resistant to regular wear and tear and corrosion. This means they can last a long time (over 15 years), and with proper dental care, they can last for decades. Therefore, these crowns are excellent for restoring damaged back teeth where the most durable material is needed due to heavy forces. Metal crowns are also the most affordable type of dental crowns in Markham. One of the major drawbacks is aesthetics; these crowns can be easily identified and give a metallic appearance to the smile, making them a little less desirable. Another problem that can arise with metal crowns is Galvanized shock. Some patients with several metallic dental fillings may experience pain and shock-like sensation when two metals in the mouth get in touch.
2. GOLD CROWNS
Dental crowns can also be made of gold as it is inert material and offers good strength and durability. However, aesthetic concerns remain due to its unnatural appearance in the oral cavity.
3. PORCELAIN FUSED TO METAL (PFM) CROWNS
PFM crowns have a metallic core that is covered by a layer of ceramic (porcelain) to give the tooth a more natural appearance. These crowns offer good strength and acceptable aesthetics, making them popular for restoring front teeth. However, PFM crowns are prone to chipping, and the outer ceramic coating may wear off in 4-5 years which gives an unaesthetic result.
4. PORCELAIN CROWNS
Porcelain crowns or all-ceramic crowns were introduced later to counter the disadvantages of metal and PFM crowns. Porcelain is a robust dental material that can be manipulated to match natural tooth shade, ensuring a flawless smile. As the name suggests, porcelain crowns are entirely made of ceramic which makes them highly aesthetic. However, porcelain is not as resistant to chipping and regular wear and tear as metal crowns. Another disadvantage of all-ceramic crowns is their tendency to wear the opposite natural tooth in certain situations. Therefore, they are not well suited for the restoration of back teeth. However, they provide excellent results when used to restore front teeth.
5. ZIRCONIA DENTAL CROWNS
Zirconia is a specialized type of ceramic that is made from zirconium dioxide, which is related to titanium. It is one of the most robust dental materials and is highly resistant to chipping and breakage. These qualities make zirconia crowns excellent for the restoration of large back teeth. Moreover, zirconia offers excellent translucency, can be moulded to match natural teeth shade and gives excellent aesthetics, making them ideal even for front teeth.
6. WHY ARE DENTAL CROWNS PRESCRIBED?
Dental crowns are given to restore a damaged tooth’s shape, size, and strength. Large and extensive dental cavities cannot be adequately restored with the help of dental fillings. In such situations, a dental crown becomes necessary to restore a compromised tooth’s proper strength and function. Dental crowns are often prescribed after root canal therapy, especially when done on the back tooth. Root canal treatments weaken the tooth, and crowns become essential to restore the tooth’s shape, size, and function. Dental crowns also protect a damaged tooth from further harm and extend its life in the oral cavity. Dental crowns are given to restore chipped or fractured teeth. Dental crowns also form an integral part of cosmetic dentistry. Porcelain and zirconia crowns are widely used to correct misshapen, cracked and heavily discoloured teeth. Crowns ensure proper oral functions like chewing and speech.
DOES GETTING A DENTAL CROWN HURT?
A decayed or damaged tooth is first rebuilt with the help of dental cement, and later a small portion of the tooth is removed to make space for the placement of a dental crown. Zirconia crowns require the least amount of tooth removal. Next, an impression is taken, which serves as a guide for the customization of your dental crown. The shade for the dental crown is also decided during this process to ensure superior aesthetics. Getting a crown does not hurt, however, the sound of drills can make you feel a little uncomfortable, but it should not hurt. In some cases, like in sensitive teeth, the process of getting a dental crown is carried out under local anesthesia to ensure a comfortable experience.
HOW LONG DOES A DENTAL CROWN LAST?
Typically any dental crown will last for around 10 years. However, if you maintain it well, have good oral hygiene and schedule regular dental check-ups, a dental crown, especially one made with metal and zirconia, can last for decades and even a lifetime.
SIGNS THAT A CROWN NEEDS TO BE REPLACED
- Pain on biting down and chewing.
- Loose and ill-fitted crown.
- Discoloured crowns.
- It looks unaesthetic.
- A feeling of discomfort with the crown.
We hope this blog provided you with a deeper insight into dental crowns. If you have any more questions or would like to schedule an appointment at Bur Oak Dental, Markham, please reach out to us. Our team of exceptional dental professionals will be there to assist you in better oral health and a beautiful everlasting smile.