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How Can Dental Crowns Restore Damaged Teeth?
Dental crowns provided by the dentist can help restore tooth function and appearance after damages. It can be difficult, if not impossible, to chew or smile if you have damaged teeth. A single damaged tooth can make the entire smile look unattractive. A dental crown is a covering for a tooth and is often necessary to repair it and prevent additional damages.
How dental crowns work
Enamel may indeed be strong, but it is not invincible. Teeth will break if exposed to traumatic force, such as during an auto accident, biting into a hard object or food and taking an elbow to the mouth during a sporting event. Cracks that result from trauma, teeth grinding, teeth clenching or normal wear and tear can damage teeth and increase the risk of more serious damage.
Once a tooth has a crack, even regular biting pressure required to eat an apple or sandwich will cause breakage. Also, cracks make teeth vulnerable to tooth decay or infection of the dental pulp. Any minor impairment on the tooth’s structure is a pathway for bacterial invasion.
Fortunately, dental crowns offer damaged teeth a second chance at full functionality. Crowns are hollow caps that cover teeth completely on all sides. They are fabricated from materials that are resilient enough to survive years of use. With material options like ceramic, resin and porcelain-fused-to-metal, crowns are also customizable to look like tooth enamel. A dentist will usually place dental crowns for the following reasons.
To repair cracked teeth: covering a cracked tooth with a crown fortifies it and significantly reduces the risk of breakage. The crown cushions biting forces to protect the tooth underneath from damage.
To restore fractured teeth: broken teeth are not cosmetically appealing, but appearance is not the greatest concern if a tooth breaks. A broken tooth can hurt soft tissues of the oral cavity (such as the lips and tongue) and make chewing harder. Depending on the level of breakage, the damaged tooth may cause severe pain. The crown will cover the exposed parts of the tooth and restore its natural appearance and function.
To strengthen a weak tooth: even if the tooth is not cracked, it could still be at risk for breaking. Brittle teeth will probably fall apart without crowns. Removing dental pulp during root canal therapy can also weaken the tooth. Placing a crown on a fragile tooth will shield it from damages.
How the dentist places a dental crown
Getting a dental crown usually requires two appointments. At the first appointment, the dentist will prepare the affected tooth. They will remove any decay, apply fillings if necessary and reshape the tooth to accommodate the crown. Next, an impression will be taken so that the dental lab can make a custom dental crown that matches the rest of the patient’s natural teeth. When the permanent crown is ready, the patient will return to have it placed.
Unless a tooth is severely damaged and cannot be saved, dental crowns can help repair and restore a broken, chip or fracture. If you have damaged teeth, contact the dental office as soon as possible for help.
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