Restore your smile
with dental crowns
If you have a damaged or decayed tooth, a dental crown from Dr. Dustin or Dr. Emily Dodds is a great way to restore your smile and your bite. Contact us to schedule your appointment at Dodds Dental in Long Beach, or learn more about crowns below.
Understanding the basics
What are dental crowns?
Dental crowns are a type of prosthetic used in restorative dentistry. A crown is essentially a thick, durable “shell” that’s built to look just like your natural tooth. Today, they are usually made of porcelain, but a lot of different materials like gold, stainless steel, and others have been used to make crowns in the past.
Before the crown is built, your natural tooth is trimmed down. Then a porcelain crown is built to fit over the tooth, covering it up all the way down to the gum line. The crown functions as a false tooth, protecting your existing enamel while maintaining the natural appearance and function of your bite.
Primarily, crowns are intended to treat serious oral health issues, such as treating cavities that are too large for a filling, covering up infected teeth that have received treatment with a root canal, or repairing a tooth that has been damaged by major oral trauma.
However, crowns can sometimes be used in cosmetic dentistry, too. If Dr. Emily or Dr. Dustin Dodds determines that one of your teeth can’t be treated with a standard cosmetic treatment like a veneer or dental bonding, a crown may be a better alternative.
How long do
Crowns usually last?
Most porcelain dental crowns have an expected lifespan of between 15-20 years before they wear out and need to be replaced. However, proper oral hygiene and care can easily extend the lifespan of a crown to 20 years or longer.
To make sure your crown lasts as long as possible, you need to make sure you clean your teeth properly. Tooth decay underneath a crown is a common cause of premature crown failure. Brush twice a day for two minutes, floss once a day, maintain a healthy diet, and avoid sugary foods and drinks when possible.
You also should come and see Dr. Emily and Dr. Dustin Dodds every six months for a teeth cleaning and oral exam, and get annual x-rays. This allows your dentist at Dodds Dental to make sure your crown is in great shape, and recommend repairs or replacement right away if there’s an issue with the crown.
Does it hurt
To get a crown?
No. It will not hurt to get a crown. To prepare for a crown, a layer of your tooth enamel must be removed using a dental drill, but your mouth will be totally numb during this process. While you may feel some pressure or vibrations from the drill during your treatment, you won’t feel any pain.
After your treatment and the application of your temporary dental crown it’s common for your tooth to feel tender and sensitive, and you may experience a little bit of soreness or discomfort. This usually lasts about a week.
What Are CRowns
Used To Treat?
Dental crowns are used to treat teeth that are damaged, decayed, or weak. A crown is a protective cap that provides additional strength and durability to withstand chewing forces. It can hold a broken tooth together and fill out the rest of the tooth’s missing structure to restore your smile and tooth functionality.
Teeth can become weakened and vulnerable to damage when they have decay or an infection. Root canal treatment is one of the restorative treatments that significantly weakens the tooth and is why a crown is recommended to be placed over rear molars to prevent breakage.
Likewise, if you had a large cavity that required a large filling, you don’t have significant natural tooth structure, and fillings are not as durable, so you will need another layer of protection. Other uses for crowns include covering up cosmetic imperfections such as discoloration or completing a tooth restoration such as a dental bridge or implant.
When a tooth has chips, cracks, or the enamel is beginning to erode, a crown is recommended to prevent worsening fractures that could lead to significant damage or an infection.
Am I A Good
Candidate For A Crown?
A good candidate for a dental crown is someone who has a damaged or weakened tooth in need of protection, has cosmetic issues with their teeth that they would like to cover up, or needs a tooth replacement in the form of a bridge or implant (that is completed with a crown).
However, we will need to examine your teeth to look for signs of active tooth decay. This will need to be removed before receiving a dental crown and if you have a tooth infection, this will need to be treated with a root canal. In some cases, your tooth may be too badly damaged or decayed to save and the best option may be to extract the tooth and replace it.
What To Do
About A Chipped Crown
The first thing you want to do is assess the extent of the damage. Are you bleeding and are there fragments of the crown in your mouth? If so, your priority should be to wash out the debris with a lukewarm saltwater solution and place gauze at the site to stop the bleeding.
Then, you should contact us right away and inform us that you’re experiencing a dental emergency. You should let us know all of the details that you can, including how the damage occurred, and how severe it is.
If you are experiencing any symptoms such as swelling, discoloration, abscess, pain, or sensitivity, let us know, because this could be a sign of an infection. If your crown has broken or been completely dislodged, take it with you to your appointment and we may be able to reattach it or repair it with resin.
Otherwise, you will receive a new dental crown. Damaged dental work is serious so you should act fast, but remain calm. As long as you get to the dentist soon, we should be able to prevent any complications and potentially save the crown. If you have a chipped crown, contact us at Dodds Dental today to schedule an emergency appointment with Dr. Emily or Dustin Dodds.
Restore your smile
Contact Dodds Dental Today
The team at Dodds Dental is always standing by to provide you with expert restorative care in Long Beach. So don’t wait. Contact us online or call at (562) 439-0754 to get an appointment with Dr. Dustin or Dr. Emily Dodds today.