Crowns in Lafayette, IN
A dental crown (also referred to as a "cap") is a tooth-shaped restoration that is placed over a tooth to cover, strengthen, and protect it to avoid fracture. Crowns are also used to improve the appearance of damaged teeth, efficiently restoring them to their natural shape, size, and color.
We will often choose to place a dental crown on a tooth that has been repaired with large restorations like a filling that doesn’t leave a lot of natural tooth structure. A crown is usually necessary after a root canal to protect and strengthen the affected tooth.
Teeth that have visible cracks on the surface may also require a crown. This will prevent the crack from getting larger and potentially fracturing the tooth. It also restores function, keeping the tooth strong for biting and chewing.
Crowns are often fabricated from porcelain but can also be made from metals such as gold, silver, platinum, and palladium. Porcelain crowns are carefully custom-matched to the color of your existing teeth so that they blend in with your smile. These crowns are made of specialized materials that are designed to endure years of use and maintain an esthetic appearance.
Dental crowns that are fabricated from metals are stronger than porcelain crowns and are often chosen at our patient's discretion in the posterior areas of the mouth when esthetics are not a concern. These crowns have the advantage of being stronger than the porcelain crowns and cannot break or crack.
Preparing the Tooth for the Crown and Intraoral Scanning
The existing tooth must be altered so that your new dental crown will fit perfectly. After the tooth is prepared, your teeth will be scanned with an intraoral scanner and digital models of your teeth will be sent to a dental laboratory, where your custom-designed crown will be manufactured. Our office uses the 3Shape Trios intraoral scanner to create these digital models of your teeth. Not only do you no longer have to go through traditional dental impressions, when using the intraoral scanner, the crowns fit better with faster turnaround time from the laboratory.
We will create a temporary crown for you to wear while your new crown is being fabricated at our trusted dental lab. In a few weeks, when your permanent crown is ready, the temporary crown will be removed, and then the permanent crown will be custom fitted and permanently cemented to your tooth.
Caring for Your Crowns
With proper care, a crown should last 10 years or longer. It is very important to brush and floss the area around the crown to avoid plaque collection and the chance of developing gum disease. It is also very important to see your dentist and hygienist regularly for a professional cleaning and examination of the crown.
Dental crowns are an important dental restoration that will restore function of your tooth, protect your oral health, and improve your appearance. If you are not sure if a dental crown is the best treatment for you, please contact our Lafayette dental office. We will be happy to arrange a consultation to discuss crowns as well as any other options that may be more appropriate for you.