Not all teeth are the same. Some keep strong no matter how many times you gnash them. Others fall apart. If your teeth have substantial damage or look brittle after a large filling, get yourself a dental crown. Before you do, you might want to consider their pros and cons.
A dental crown “caps” or “crowns” the affected tooth. These crowns are usually shaped like the original tooth. This is so they align with the rest of your teeth. If the original tooth is faulty or requires enhancement, the patient may choose to reshape it to their liking.
As with all restorations, dental crowns have their pros and cons. Before getting that dental crown, consider the following:
Cons: Risk of decay, heightened tooth sensitivity
To understand the risks, you’ll have to know how a dental crown is applied. For this, you’ll need two appointments:
- During the first appointment, your dentist might have to check the tooth for any problems. During a dental crown procedure, your dentist will take out the tooth’s outer portion. Your tooth, then, must be as healthy as possible. After a few treatments—or the check-up, if the tooth is deemed fit enough—the dentist will then reshape your tooth. Afterward, they will make an impression of it. This impression will serve as a basis for the crown.
- During the second appointment, the cap is installed. Sometime after the first appointment, you’ll wear a temporary crown to protect the tooth. After 2-3 weeks, the dentist’s office will inform you once the crown is ready. Before cementing it permanently, they will check if the cap fits your bite. If it does not, they can make the needed adjustments.
Because the procedure takes off some of the tooth enamel, the tooth might be more sensitive to certain foods. The process might also traumatize the dental pulp, particularly if it’s damaged by decay prior. This trauma may exacerbate the pain further.
Another risk factor arises if you don’t take care of your oral hygiene after the procedure. Because a crown caps the actual tooth, tooth decay can accumulate underneath it. This accumulation can still cause tooth problems. Great care should then be taken to clean up those tight spaces.
Pros: Protects and strengthens your teeth
The disadvantages of dental crowns might alarm some. But you can quickly remedy them. You can relieve dental sensitivity by adding a solution to the exposed dentin, while you can solve dental pulp pain via a root canal. And the risk of tooth decay goes down considerably with proper oral hygiene.
Once attended to these problems, the advantages of dental crowns become more prominent. For one, weak teeth with dental crowns become less vulnerable to bacterial attacks if followed up with an excellent oral hygiene routine. They also put together teeth which have been badly chipped and cracked, providing them with the needed support to prevent further breakage.
If you also have another dental restoration down the line (such as a dental bridge or implant), a dental crown is also needed to support and protect them.
Nonetheless, the decision to push through with a dental crown procedure ultimately depends on what your needs are. Once you’ve identified what you want, making the decision becomes much more manageable.