A porcelain crown is a specially made covering for a tooth. While it can be constructed from any number of materials, porcelain is the most popular. A dentist may choose to attach a crown if the natural tooth has cracked or chipped. They are also considered for cosmetic situations where a tooth has been stained to a point where it can no longer be whitened.
Before the actual procedure, a dentist will examine the tooth in question. If it is in particularly bad shape, then a root canal may be performed first to help stabilize the tooth. After this, part of the enamel of the outer tooth is removed to create a space for the walls of the crown to rest in. Depending on the extent of any physical damage, the entire tooth may be reshaped in order to make it a better fit for a crown. Finally, a mold is taken of the tooth and sent off to a laboratory where the crown will be produced.
Once the crown is made, which can take anywhere from two to three weeks, it is permanently cemented to the remains of the natural tooth. While alloys or resins can be used, porcelain is the most popular because of its resemblance to natural tooth enamel.
Once the crown is cemented in place, there is no specific recovery time necessary. However, patients should still avoid activities that could place stress on the crown. This includes eating foods that may pull on the crown and dislodge it or eating foods that are very hard which could chip or crack the crown. With regular dental cleanings and good hygiene, a porcelain crown may last as long as twenty years or more.Read More