Although dental crowns have been around for a relatively long time and are a popular method for dentists to restore and repair teeth, not everyone knows what they are, what they’re made of, how they’re made, or how long they last.
To answer all your questions, we’ve put together the most interesting facts we could find about crowns and even added a few of our own.
How long does a crown last?
Depending on where it is in your mouth, the general wear and tear, and how well you care for it, a crown should last anywhere between 10 and 20 years.
Some bad habits, such as grinding your teeth, biting your fingernails, chewing on ice, or using your teeth to tear open packets, will definitely affect its longevity.
When are crowns recommended?
Your dentist will recommend a crown to:
- Protect a weakened tooth from further decay
- Restore a tooth that is worn down, cracked, or broken
- Strengthen a tooth following root canal treatment
- Hold a bridge in place
- Cover discolored teeth
- Save a decayed tooth that can’t hold a filling
- Protect primary teeth, especially for children at a higher risk as a result of poor oral hygiene
- Or for cosmetic reasons
Why do I need a crown?
Knowing when you need a crown is one thing, but understanding why you need it is important too. Your teeth, contrary to popular belief, don’t only help you chew your food or look good in selfies; without teeth, you wouldn’t be able to speak clearly, and your face would lose its shape.
Will people know I have a crown?
Dental crowns are made to match your natural teeth in color and shape. When done by an experienced dentist it will be tough for people to notice you have a crown.
Can you explain the process to me?
Getting a crown usually involves two separate visits to your dentist. During the first appointment, your dentist will file and shape the tooth so the crown fits correctly. They will also take an impression of your teeth, and in some instances, a temporary crown might be fitted.
The second visit is to have the permanent crown fitted. Before cementing it into place, your dentist will make sure it fits comfortably and correctly. Keep in mind that it will take a few days for the crown to settle properly in your mouth.
Is the process painful?
At worst, the process is probably more uncomfortable than it is painful. To shape the tooth, your dentist will give you a local anesthetic, but if you have already had a root canal treatment, this won’t be necessary. Some patients may also experience discomfort or sensitivity when the local anesthesia wears off, but this should pass relatively quickly and can be treated with over-the-counter pain relievers.
How do I take care of my dental crown?
Unlike natural teeth that are susceptible to cavities and decay, dental crowns aren’t, but the areas around it can get infected, as well as the edge of the tooth that it’s covering. You need to brush and floss your crown daily like you would your natural teeth.
Can it fall off?
Crowns can fall off. This usually happens when the cement doesn’t hold or because the tooth underneath it has broken or decayed. When this happens, it is best to see your dentist as soon as possible. But most crowns last for many, many years.
Can children get crowns?
When a child’s primary teeth are severely decayed, your dentist might suggest pediatric dental crowns. Because they’re made of stainless steel, they’re often called silver crowns. Although there are also resin crowns available, the stainless steel ones are quick and easy to fit, which makes them a better option for young patients that can’t sit still for too long.
I need a crown. Where is the closest dentist?
You can look for an ADA member dentist online, or if you are in Wayland, Michigan, contact Dr. Bruce Sexton, DDS. As one of the first dentists to use state-of-the-art technology in the area, you can rest assured that you are getting the best possible treatment.