Dental crowns are a staple of restorative dentistry, helping patients achieve a smile that is both healthy and attractive. In most cases, a crown is used in the replacement of lost tooth tissue where a smaller restoration, such as a filling, would be unsatisfactory. This need may arise from a variety of dental problems, all of which can be effectively treated.
The benefits of a crown extend beyond its utility, however, through the use of porcelain as a dental material. By using porcelain crowns at our Brooklyn dental practice, we offer patients a way to reinforce the strength of their teeth while keeping or even improving the aesthetics of their smile.
Most restorations, namely fillings, are simply inserted into a tooth’s cavity to replace any tissue lost to decay. This method is useful for smaller cavities that do not threaten the overall health of a tooth. However, larger cavities or areas of damage may not be aptly solved through a mere filling, as the tooth has been significantly weakened. In such cases, a restoration is needed to not just replace lost tissue but also protect the whole tooth from further damage.
In addition to filling space within a tooth, a dental crown covers the tooth’s exterior, shielding it from external forces. In this way, a crown “caps” the tooth, serving as its outer layer much in the way enamel typically does. This allows a patient to preserve a tooth in situations when it might otherwise need to be replaced.
Crowns are typically used to strengthen and protect a weakened tooth, but the underlying reason for the tooth’s condition varies. The following problems are commonly solved through the use of one or more crowns:
Tooth decay: When a cavity is so large that a significant portion of tissue must be removed, a crown may be necessary to fully restore the tooth. Crowns may also be eventually needed for teeth that form recurrent decay around old fillings.
Large chips: Physical injury may cause a tooth to become chipped or cracked. For significant damage, a crown can protect the tooth while fixing its shape and size.
Root canal: Root canal therapy is typically performed when a tooth’s roots have become infected. After treatment, the tooth is left weakened by a large degree of lost tissue and removed roots, requiring a crown.
Tooth loss: Dental implants and bridges are two common forms of tooth replacement, both of which often utilize dental crowns as part of the restoration.
Even when teeth are perfectly healthy, a porcelain crown may be used for its cosmetic advantages alone. When other treatment options such as porcelain veneers and dental bonding are insufficient, a crown can cover severe aesthetic flaws permanently. For more information on how a porcelain crown can help you, consult a knowledgeable cosmetic dentist.
By using porcelain, dental crowns gain a range of benefits. First, the aesthetics of porcelain rival those of real tooth enamel, helping dental crowns and other restorations appear no different than the rest of your teeth. This is due to the fact that porcelain is semi-translucent and light-reflective, giving it a nearly identical textural quality to that of enamel.
Crowns also benefit from the color matching capabilities of porcelain, which can complement nearly any smile’s specific shade. And because porcelain is highly stain resistant, this color is likely to last many years – often as long as the restoration itself.
Finally, the average lifespan of porcelain restorations is longer than other tooth-colored materials. With good hygiene and preventative care, a crown can easily last 15 years without any significant wear.
Schedule a consultation with us to learn more about how a dental crown or another of our restorative treatments, may be able to help you. Contact us for additional information and to set up an appointment.