Crowns are restorations used to strengthen or improve your tooth's shape when there is not enough tooth structure to predictably hold a filling. Crowns are most often used for teeth that are broken, worn, or have portions destroyed by tooth decay. The crown can not only strengthen the tooth but can allow us to make changes in shape, length, and color. Patients often have a negative impression of crowns because they see so many that don't look real, but there is no reason crowns can't look just like your natural teeth.
Crowns are "caps" cemented onto an existing tooth which fully cover the portion of your tooth above the gum line. In effect, the crown becomes your tooth's new outer surface. Crowns can be made of porcelain, metal, or both. Porcelain crowns are most often preferred in esthetic areas because they mimic the translucency of natural teeth. In areas where strength is more important than esthetics, we might use gold.
Crowns are often preferable to fillings when the remaining tooth structure is weak. The crown reinforces the tooth to help prevent further breakdown. Your crown is created in a lab from your unique tooth impression which allows a dental laboratory technician to examine all aspects of your bite and jaw movements. Your crown is then sculpted just for you so that your bite and jaw movements function normally once the crown is placed.
Four crowns and the replacement of some old discolored fillings restored Jim's smile!
Six porcelain crowns gave Nancy the smile she wanted. Now she's thinking of replacing some of the metal in back.
Three crowns and a replacement filling-looks like new!
If you have any questions about what is possible for your smile, please ask.
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