Dental crowns increase the strength of teeth that have been weakened by dental fillings. They can also be used to protect your teeth from further decay or damage. If you have structural damage present in your tooth, your dentist may suggest a crown restoration.
Crowns used to be made from gold or amalgam, but now they're commonly made from ceramic. Ceramic is a strong, long-lasting material that also has the benefit of matching the color of your teeth. Here is what will happen during a ceramic crown restoration procedure:
1. Your dentist will take X-rays.
Before proceeding with your crown restoration procedure, your dentist will first take X-rays of your teeth. These X-rays will allow them to evaluate the overall condition of your tooth. If you have any tooth decay, your dentist will remove it before placing your crown.
2. Your dentist will take molds of your teeth.
Ceramic dental crowns must be custom-made for each patient. Your dentist will take impressions of your tooth. They will also take bite impressions that show them how your teeth fit together. Using these molds, they will create a ceramic crown.
3. Your dentist will shape your tooth.
Ceramic crowns are the same shape and size as the teeth they replace. In order to ensure a good fit, your dentist will first need to shape your tooth to make room for the crown. They will do this by grinding away much of your tooth's enamel to create a good foundation for the crown. You will be injected with local anesthetic before this part of the procedure begins. Enamel doesn't grow back over time, so once your tooth is shaped to accommodate a crown, you will need to continue to wear a dental crown on that tooth for the rest of your life.
4. Your dentist will glue your crown in place.
Dental crowns are permanently adhered to your mouth using dental glue. During this process, your dentist will use air to thoroughly dry your tooth. They may use a dental dam to keep the area dry while they work. Some crown restoration procedures can be completed on the same day. Other procedures are done in two parts to allow time for a custom crown to be created. If your dental crown is attached on a different day, your dentist may choose to administer local anesthetic a second time. Once your crown is in place, your tooth may feel sensitive for a few days until you adjust.