Cosmetic: Crowns

You try to look after your teeth, you visit your dentist, but you still seem to be getting your teeth filled and the teeth are now cracking. Is there not a better way to fix a tooth?

Perhaps a crown might be a better solution.

What is a crown?
A crown is a type of dental restoration which is custom made for the tooth on a model before being bonded in place in the mouth. It can replace all or part of the tooth which is above the gum -  full crowns or partial crowns.  In comparison, fillings are dental restorations that are placed directly in a prepared cavity in the tooth. For this reason crowns will usually be much stronger, more durable and more protective of the remaining tooth structure.

And what is a crown made of?
Crowns can be made out of porcelain or ceramic, metal (usually a gold alloy), or a combination of both.

Do you have to do a root treatment first?
No. Whilst it is important to crown back teeth which have been root treated, it is rarely necessary with modern techniques to root treat a tooth simply to allow a crown to be placed on it.

So why should I crown a tooth?
Reasons for recommending a crown would include
• To restore a tooth to its original shape.
• To strengthen a tooth which is heavily filled, or cracked or both
• To improve the cosmetic appearance of a tooth.

Is it a long procedure?

Some crowns need to be made in a laboratory by a specialist ceramist. This would mean two visits to the dentist – the first to take the mould of the tooth and the second, about 2 to 3 weeks later to fit the new crown. But it is also possible to make some crowns in a single visit using a system called Cerec. This technique allows us to prepare and place a crown in a single visit – meaning a beautifully restored tooth in only half the time.