A dental crown is an installation that a dentist creates to cover or restore the shape of a tooth above the gum line. Dental crowns are also sometimes called dental caps or tooth caps. There are number of reasons that patients may need dental crowns. A lot of these involve extensive structural damage to the tooth, but there are other situations that might also call for dental crown installation.
Dental Crowns to Restore Tooth Shape
One of the biggest reasons that dentists rely on a dental crown procedure is when a tooth has been chipped, cracked or shattered. This often happens in cases of extreme contact, from fights to slip and fall injuries. Dentists look at how to protect any exposed roots and make the mouth look normal after tooth damage reveals jagged contours of broken teeth.
Dental Crowns for Cosmetic Appearance
Today, there are a range of dental services that help patients to make their mouths simply look better. In some cases, a dental crown might be used to mask tooth discoloration, or minor damage or even to strengthen a tooth that has been compromised by decay conditions. However, classically, crowns are a last resort for these kinds of situations. One reason dentists might be reluctant to install dental crowns for cosmetic reasons is that they may have to grind away a significant part of the tooth in order to install the crown. Modern dentists have other options for changing the appearance of the mouth, including new “dental veneers” that patients might select to brighten or cosmetically improve teeth.
With the growing popularity of porcelain veneers, it’s important to distinguish these types of choices from dental crowns. Generally, the veneer consists only of a thin sheet of porcelain or other material on the front side of the teeth for a simple cosmetic fix, where the dental crown is a larger, thicker cap for the teeth. However, in some cases, it can be hard to figure out if a particular dental fix belongs in the category of a crown or a veneer.
Choices of Dental Crowns
It’s important to understand that dental crowns can be made out of porcelain or heavy metals like gold. In the first case, the porcelain crown helps the installation to blend into the mouth so that other people might not even know that the crown is present. With gold and similar dental crowns, the opposite is true: the fixture becomes a visible and even visually compelling part of the mouth. Patients choose one or the other kinds of dental crowns according to their own personal outlook on these restorative installations.
Talk to your dentist about all of your options for fixing up your mouth in the best way to promote dental health and improve your appearance at the same time. Get all of the info about the risks and benefits of each procedure to choose the dental solutions that are best for you.