Broken, misshapen or decayed teeth can greatly impact the appearance of your smile. They can make you self-conscious and not want to expose your teeth when around other people which can have a huge effect on your day-to-day life.
Dental crowns are one solution which a dentist can use to repair your teeth and give you back a smile to be proud of. You have probably heard of dental crowns before as they are one of the most common cosmetic dentistry procedures, but how do they actually work? If you are looking into having dental crowns in London then here are some handy pointers about how they work and what to expect from your procedure.
What is a crown?
Essentially, a dental crown is a cap which is placed over a broken or decayed tooth to restore its appearance and strength. When cemented into place, the crown covers the entirety of the remaining damaged tooth to give a natural appearance of a perfect tooth.
Dental crowns are often used to support damaged teeth or teeth which have a large filling leaving not a lot of natural tooth left. In cases like this, a dental crown will protect the weakened tooth from further damage or decay and help to prevent further treatment being required.
Dental crowns can be made from a variety of materials with the most common being porcelain bonded to precious metal. The base is created using the metal and porcelain is applied in layers over it making for a strong and durable crown. Porcelain crowns can be coloured to match your existing teeth for a natural appearance.
In order to find out which crowns are the right fit for you it is a good idea to discuss these with your dentist in the initial appointment.
Depending on whereabouts in your mouth you are requiring the crowns and the strength you require there are options to choose from including porcelain fused to metal, porcelain and porcelain zirconia.
For the most natural looking crowns you can opt for the porcelain zirconia as opposed to porcelain fused with metal that can appear grey or discoloured in comparison with your other teeth.
What happens during the procedure?
You will need at least 2 visits to your dentist in order for a crown to be fit. During the first visit, your dentist will file down your existing tooth to eliminate any decay and remove the weakened parts of the tooth. This will be done under local anaesthetic so you won’t feel any pain. The dentist will leave a strong core for the crown to be attached to. If the tooth has had a large filling or a root canal, your dentist may construct a core using filling material.
You will have imprints taken of the tooth to which the crown is being applied as well as imprints of the opposite side of your mouth and possible your bite too. These imprints will help the dental technician create a crown which fits your mouth perfectly and looks as natural as possible.
Your dentist will fit a temporary crown so that you can use the tooth while you await the second part of the procedure.
When you return to our dentist he will put the crown into place and once you are both satisfied with the fit, your dentist will use a special cement to permanently attach the crown into place. The new crown may feel strange for the first few weeks but you will get used to it quickly and no longer notice it.
Your new crown
Once you have had your crown fitted, the tooth underneath will be protected from further damage or decay. A dental crown can also be used to hold a dental bridge in place so if you have further dental work planned your new crown marks the completion of the first step. You will still need to take care of your crown as you would regular teeth to prevent and damage to the surface of the crown.