Dental crowns are a treatment commonly used in restorative dentistry to help shore up a tooth that has been heavily damaged or extensively decayed. Crowns are also placed on teeth that have undergone root canal therapy. Crowns can be cleaned and maintained just like your other teeth, although porcelain crowns can require some special considerations to prevent damage.
Caring for Your Crowns
Once your crowns have been placed, they require very little special care, if any. Regular brushing and flossing helps keep plaque and tartar from building up on the crowns or the adjacent teeth and also helps keep the surrounding gum tissue healthy. You should continue to see your dentist regularly, as it’s possible for decay to develop underneath the crown where it can only be seen with an X-ray. The interior of the tooth under the crown could also become infected, and this condition is also best diagnosed by a professional.
If you have porcelain crowns, they are not quite as durable as metal crowns, so you should avoid biting or chewing hard objects like pens, pencils, or ice cubes. Your dentist will provide additional instructions on how to properly care for your crowns.
Uses for Restorative Crowns
Restorative dentistry focuses on restoring teeth that have been damaged by trauma or decay. Dental crowns are generally used for teeth that have cracked, broken off, or that have been treated with root canal therapy. They are also used to anchor replacement teeth in a crown and bridge. Though once used for cosmetic purposes, they are now reserved almost exclusively for restoration.
If you need a crown, you’ll generally have it placed in a two-stage process. First, your tooth is treated to remove decay or infection. When this phase is completed, your dentist reshapes your tooth to make room for the crown and makes molds of your tooth. The crown is created using the molds so that it will exactly fit your tooth. Once the permanent crown arrives, it is set in place with a strong, permanent adhesive.
To schedule an appointment and to get more information, call us at the office of Dr. Lassle today.