Do you have a tooth that’s broken, badly decayed or shaped incorrectly? If so, you may want to have a crown, or cap, placed on the tooth to restore it to its normal appearance.
Crowns are usually made from porcelain in a colour that matches your teeth, and are attached to a strong metal shell. Less commonly, they’re made of gold or non-precious alloys, ceramic, acrylic or composite resin, or any combination of these. Your dentist will decide which one is right for you.
Sometimes a metal post must be placed in the tooth to support the crown. In this case root canal therapy is done, and then the post is fit into the prepared root canal filling.
Since the crown must align correctly with your other teeth for a correct bite, several impressions, or moulds, of your teeth will be taken. The dental laboratory that your dentist works with will make the crown from the moulds of your teeth. A temporary crown will be used to protect the tooth until the permanent crown is ready.
At the second visit, the dentist will fit the crown over the old tooth. If you and your dentist are satisfied with the fit and feel, your dentist will cement the crown into place. Depending on the materials used to make them, crowns can last for many years with careful daily oral hygiene.
A crown may be recommended to:
- Restore cracked teeth.
- Guard weak teeth from fracturing.
- Support a large filling when there isn’t enough tooth remaining.
- Fix badly shaped or discoloured teeth.
- Strengthen teeth following a root canal, when teeth can become weak or more likely to fracture.
- To cover damage caused by decay.