A tooth crown (also known as a dental crown) is an artificial protective cap that is placed over a damaged or decaying tooth to strengthen it and resemble the shape of a natural tooth. When placed, your dental crown will cover and protect your tooth and generally improve its appearance.
Dental crowns are expected to last up to 20 years, however, the condition of your oral health will impact the life of your dental crowns. Maintaining a healthy oral hygiene routine can make dental crowns last longer, however smoking, poor dieting, and bruxism (biting or grinding of the teeth).
Dental crowns (also known as caps) are used to cover damaged or chipped teeth and restore them to their original shape. Dental crowns are used if a filling isn’t enough to rectify and restore the damaged tooth or teeth.
Crowns are able to hold together parts of a cracked tooth or hold a bridge in place. The types of dental crowns have developed over time and some are now able to perfectly replicate the appearance of your natural teeth.
Patients are able to choose the type of crown they require, options may include:
The steel crown is removed and replaced with your permanent crown after anywhere between two weeks to one month. Stainless steel is commonly used in children’s teeth as they are cost-effective and do not require multiple dental visits (custom-made crowns are more expensive and often require more visits). However, because metallic crowns are visible, they are best suited for molars positioned at the back of the mouth.
Metal (titanium) crowns
Porcelain and metal hybrids
Having a dental crown fitted is typically painless and fast. An anesthetic is applied to numb the targeted area, then a dental drill and an abrasive bur is used to remove the top and side layers of your original tooth (to create space for the crown). Your dentist will then take an impression of your tooth, either by using a digital scanner or impression paste and this is sent to a laboratory for the crown to be made. Your new crown is then fitted using a special dental cement.
Your crown can take between two to three weeks to be made, but during this period, you will have a temporary crown placed over your tooth. Once your bespoke crown is ready for placement, your temporary crown will be removed and replaced with the permanent crown.
Dental crown placement generally isn’t painful due to the target area being numbed. During the procedure, you shouldn’t feel much pain but you may experience some sensitivity post-procedure when the anesthetic has worn off.
If you do experience some minor discomfort, this can be alleviated with some painkillers your dentist will recommend.
A dental crown is necessary to fix the following problems:
Dental crowns are also available to children who suffer from the following:
Although you will only wear your temporary crown for up to three weeks, there are still some simple but important aftercare rules to follow.
In some cases, a patient’s tooth may be so badly damaged that it cannot support the new crown on its own. This is where dental crown lengthening is used. This process reduces the gum tissue and shaves down the bone of your tooth so more of the tooth is above the gum’s surface.
If a crown is fitted to a tooth that has poor structural integrity, it will likely break.
Dental crown lengthening is a straightforward procedure and patients can expect to go home on the same day. How long your treatment takes depends on the severity of the treatment (how many teeth are being treated and the condition of the teeth). Once the local anesthetic is applied, your dentist will begin filing down your gum tissue, to make way for supporting your new crown. Your gums are then sutured back together.
The procedure is mostly painless but you can expect some discomfort after the procedure as the anesthetic wears off. Over-the-counter painkillers will help with the pain and you will be provided with a mouth rinser to help keep the area clean and promote faster healing.
The price of your procedure will depend on a number of factors, typically the type of crown selected and the number of crowns required.
At Hove Dental, our single tooth dental crown treatments start from £2,300. This covers the procedure, the crown, and all visits required.
Yes, dental crowns can be replaced when they become discolored, no longer fit your gums, or have been otherwise damaged. If you have had your teeth whitened before your new crown was fitted, we can either replace the crown or whiten it.