How to Know If You Need a Dental Crown

Gray-haired woman outside wearing a gray button-up over a white tanktop smiles with a natural-looking dental crown

Are you wondering if you might need a dental crown? Here, we’ll explain what a dental crown is, how to know if you need one, how they are placed, and how to care for them.

About Dental Crowns

A dental crown, also known as a cap, is a tooth-shaped covering for a tooth that is used to improve its appearance by restoring its size, strength, and shape. The crown is cemented directly onto the tooth or placed onto a dental implant that acts as a replacement for a missing tooth root. There are a number of different materials that a dental crown can be made of, such as porcelain, ceramic, gold and metal alloys, and acrylic. A special dental ceramic is commonly used for both front and back teeth due to its natural-looking color and durability.

How to Know If You Need a Dental Crown

You might need a dental crown for a number of different reasons:

  • Cracks in teeth can be protected by crowns that hold the tooth together.
  • A crown can be used to cover a severely discolored or misshapen tooth.
  • Crowns are used for structural reasons like to top an implant or to hold a dental bridge in place.
  • Dental crowns can be used if a tooth is severely worn down due to chronic teeth grinding.
  • If a tooth is severely decayed, a crown can cover the cleaned-out tooth to protect it from further damage and allow for normal chewing.

How a Dental Crown Is Placed

With our advanced CEREC® technology, Helotes Family Dentistry is able to treat our patients like royalty! In just one or two hours, you will walk out of our office with a natural-looking crown that will restore your mouth to full function and beauty. First, our expert team will determine that you are a candidate for a dental crown. Then, we’ll take a digital impression of your tooth (no messy goop required!) so our CEREC software can produce a virtual model of your artificial tooth. Once our in-house milling machine has crafted your custom crown from a tooth-colored ceramic block, we’ll cement it to your tooth and check that its fit is comfortable and its appearance is beautiful and natural-looking.

How to Care for a Dental Crown

You’ll need to care for your dental crown the same way you would your natural teeth. Though a dental crown can’t get decay or cavities, the rest of your mouth is still vulnerable to bacteria. Moreover, a crown can come loose if the underlying tooth experiences more decay. Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time and floss at least once a day to ensure that your underlying tooth, surrounding teeth, and gums stay strong and healthy. With proper care and depending on how much wear and tear they go through, dental crowns typically last between 5 to 15 years.

One-Visit Crowns at Our Helotes Dental Office

If you need a dental crown, our expert team is here to help. Get in touch with us to learn more about this same-day restorative dental procedure!

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Helotes Family Dentistry

Helotes Family Dentistry