Oak Grove Family & Cosmetic Dentistry provides comprehensive dental services for patients of all ages, including advanced treatment options for damaged teeth, such as a dental crown in Durham, NC. Dr. Erika Graham is your local restorative dentist. She provides dental crowns to patients with severely damaged or decayed teeth to prevent the need for tooth extraction. Learn more about dental crowns below.
Dental Crowns in Durham, NC
If you have a severely broken or decayed tooth, you may think it is a lost cause. However, often we can save most of your natural tooth structure by replacing the entire exterior of an affected tooth with a dental crown. Dental crowns are porcelain caps designed to replace the entire exterior of a tooth.
The natural tooth is shaped down to a foundational core used to support the crown. Then, the crown is placed on top of the foundational core using dental cement for a long-term tooth repair solution. Patients appreciate dental crowns because they allow them to avoid unnecessary tooth extraction.
Because the dental crown replaces the entire exterior of your natural tooth, this procedure requires more enamel removal than options like porcelain veneers. Additionally, the dental crown goes above and beyond correcting the aesthetics of an affected tooth. They also restore the tooth’s functionality, allowing you to chew and speak properly.
Once complete, your dental crown restoration will blend seamlessly with your smile and function like your natural tooth. With proper oral hygiene and biannual dental appointments, your dental crown should last you for many years before needing to be replaced.
The Many Uses of Dental Crowns
Dental crowns are among the most popular dental treatments because they treat various cosmetic and restorative dental concerns.
When you have a discolored tooth, the go-to solution is professional teeth whitening. But not all tooth stains respond to traditional whitening treatments. Stains from medication and teeth that are “dead” won’t respond to bleaching techniques. Dental crowns can match any shade of white you desire to treat stubborn tooth discoloration. They completely cover the tooth, so the discolored tooth is hidden.
Misshapen or deformed teeth can make you self-conscious and cause problems with function as well. Depending on where the tooth is located in the mouth, it can also impact how you chew or speak. Each dental crown is custom to your smile. We match the shape, size, and color with the rest of your teeth so that it blends together seamlessly. We can create the appearance too of a more even smile or close gaps in between teeth.
One of the most common uses for a dental crown is to stabilize the tooth after a root canal. We remove the infected pulp from inside the tooth during a root canal. We clean the area, fill it with biocompatible material, and seal the tooth. However, that isn’t always enough. Depending on the state of the tooth, the walls of the tooth can be fragile and brittle. We want to ensure you have the same amount of stability as you would before the root canal. A dental crown gives that and seals the tooth further from future infection.
Dental crowns are often the last defense for a tooth before extraction. Severe breakage or decay are both problems that a dental crown aims to fix. Fillings and other restorations aren’t enough to keep the tooth stable and useful. A dental crown keeps the pieces of the tooth together and gives you back the function of your tooth.
Dental crowns are the most common choice to complete a dental implant restoration. When topped with a dental crown, a dental implant looks and feels like a natural tooth. We can also you crowns to fortify natural teeth to adequately support a dental bridge. This eliminates the stress and strain it can put on your natural teeth. Instead of your teeth wearing down faster due to the bridge, the crown takes on all the weight.
Taking Care of Dental Crowns
Dental crowns can last up to 20 years or more, but you must take care of them to keep up the looks and function. To start, you have to keep up with your oral healthcare. Brush your teeth at least twice daily and floss at least once daily. If you can, brush and floss after every meal, or at least rinse your mouth with water when you’re done eating or drinking something that’s not water. This eliminates plaque buildup on and around the crowns. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles to ensure you don’t scratch your crowns.
Every six months, visit our office for a bi-annual checkup. We’ll examine the crown and ensure nothing impacts its integrity and it still fits well. A loose crown means that debris and bacteria can get under it and compromise the integrity of your natural tooth. If this happens, we’ll provide a new dental restoration that fits properly.
We recommend a mouthguard if you grind or clench your teeth at night. It’s important that we protect the dental crowns from any extra pressure. While crowns are durable, they aren’t indestructible. You should also avoid biting down on hard or sticky foods directly with your crown. These things are liable to damage or displace the crown.
Tooth Crown FAQs
Dental crowns are one of the most versatile restorations a dentist has. Learn more about them by reading the answers to these frequently asked questions.
When does a patient need a dental crown?
If you have a damaged tooth, your dental provider may recommend a crown to restore the shape and function of your tooth. Crowns cover teeth after root canals or large fillings and repair cracked or weakened teeth. They also provide coverage over the abutment of a dental implant to replace a single missing tooth. This versatility makes them a popular and common dental restoration.
Can I receive dental crowns in one day?
Yes, it is possible to receive dental crowns in one day. Your dentist will use CEREC (Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics). This technology allows dentists to create and place ceramic restorations, such as crowns, in just one appointment. As a result, this eliminates the need for multiple visits to the dentist office. However, not all dental offices offer this service. It is best to check with your dentist.
Schedule An Appointment
If you have a broken or severely decayed tooth, schedule an appointment with our Durham, NC dentist office. We will restore your smile so you can achieve a healthy and beautiful smile.