Restoring Damaged Teeth: How Dental Crowns Preserve Structure and Function
Weak or damaged teeth affect more than smile aesthetics. They can cause problems like difficulty chewing and poor oral health. However, dental restorations like crowns offer a great solution to preserve the structure of weakened teeth. These tooth-shaped caps cover damaged teeth, protecting them from further damage and restoring their appearance and function. Learn more about these versatile dental restorations in our blog.
What are Dental Crowns?
A crown is a tooth-shaped cap made of porcelain, resin, ceramic or metal, which covers weakened teeth to restore their shape, size and appearance. They can be used to protect weak, decayed, or irregularly shaped teeth, placed on top of dental implants as prosthetic teeth or used as part of dental bridge restorations to anchor the artificial teeth in place.
The dental crown procedure typically consists of two appointments. During the first one, your dentist will remove the old filling material and decay, if any, and take your teeth impressions to prepare your custom crown. You will be given a temporary crown until the new one is prepared. Once your new crown is ready, you will be called in for fitting and application. The crown will be attached with a high-strength bonding agent, and your dentist will make any adjustments required for a secure and comfortable fit, leaving you with a fully restored smile.
Types of Dental Crowns
There are different types of crown materials, with porcelain and ceramic often being the most popular options because of their cost-effectiveness and ability to blend with natural teeth. The material you choose depends on your budget, preference, and dentist’s recommendation.
The different types of dental crowns include:
All-Ceramic or All-Porcelain Crowns
All ceramic or all-porcelain crowns are made from ceramic or porcelain. They mimic natural teeth’ colour, translucency, and texture, making them an excellent choice for restoring front teeth where aesthetics are a primary concern. While metal or PFM crowns may be stronger than they are, they offer sufficient strength and durability for many dental applications.
Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal (PFM) Crowns
Porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) crowns combine the strength of metal with the aesthetic appeal of porcelain. They have a substructure covered with a layer of tooth-coloured porcelain, providing a natural appearance. PFM crowns are versatile and suitable for both front and back teeth restorations.
Metal crowns are usually preferred for back teeth, where durability and strength are essential. They are made from metal alloys such as gold, silver or other metals. Known for their exceptional strength and longevity, metal crowns require minimal tooth removal compared to other types of crowns. While they may not offer the most aesthetic appearance, metal crowns are highly durable and well-suited to endure strong chewing forces.
Zirconia crowns are made from zirconium oxide, a strong, durable and biocompatible ceramic material. They offer excellent resistance to fracture and chipping, making them suitable for both front and back teeth restorations. These crowns provide a natural appearance with tooth-coloured translucency, making them virtually indistinguishable from natural teeth.
Role of Dental Crowns in Preserving Tooth Structure and Function
Dental crowns are the only restoration that helps strengthen the tooth structure, helping you retain oral health and functionality. They offer various benefits, which include:
Protect Weakened Teeth
Dental crowns preserve the underlying tooth structure from further decay, damage, or fracture. They cover the visible portion of the tooth above the gum line, helping maintain the tooth’s structural integrity and preventing the need for more invasive treatments like extractions. Crowns are also recommended after a root canal treatment to protect the weakened tooth and improve appearance.
Enhance Strength and Function
Crowns support and reinforce the tooth structure and evenly distribute biting and chewing forces across the tooth. This reduces the risk of fracture or damage and improves chewing ability.
Maintain Proper Alignment
Dental crowns prevent issues such as shifting or misalignment when teeth are missing or severely damaged. Gaps between the teeth can lead to the shifting of neighbouring teeth. Additionally, weak teeth are more prone to decay, increasing the risk of cavities and compromising healthy teeth.
Crowns are designed to closely match the natural teeth’ size, shape, and colour, ensuring a seamless and aesthetically pleasing restoration. They cover stains, discolouration, cracks, and misshapen teeth for an improved smile.
Benefit Long-Term Oral Health
With proper care and maintenance, dental crowns can provide long-term durability and stability, allowing you to enjoy a healthy, functional smile for years. They feel and function like natural teeth and don’t need any special maintenance other than regular brushing and flossing. Dental crowns can last 10 years or more with the proper aftercare and maintenance.
Protect Your Smile!
At BlueGum Dental Clinic, we strongly advocate preventive and restorative care to help you maintain your natural teeth and have a healthy smile for a lifetime. We go beyond aesthetics, promoting tailored treatments that address the root cause of your dental concerns to deliver precise solutions. From restoring damaged or missing teeth with dental crowns and bridges to getting a whiter smile with teeth whitening and a range of other services to meet your dental needs, we’re here to help you achieve optimal oral health for a healthy and radiant smile. Book a consultation with our Brentwood dentists for more information.