By: Dr. Lahiru Chandraweera

September 09, 2023

Mastering the Dental Crown Procedure: Your Complete Patient’s Handbook

As awareness of oral health grows, more Australians are seeking dental treatments to address issues such as tooth decay, cracked, broken, or chipped teeth. Dental crowns have become a popular option for people seeking restorative treatments, for they offer numerous benefits.

Before you decide on a dental crown, it’s crucial to understand the procedure, the materials used, and how to care for your crown. This knowledge will help you make an informed decision, prepare you for the process, and prevent any unwanted surprises.

In this blog post, we’ll cover:

By the end of this post, you’ll have a thorough understanding of The dental crown procedure, its benefits, and how to care for your dental crown. So, let’s get started!

Hills Family Dental Centre

Summary of the Content

  • Dental crowns are a popular choice for tooth restoration, offering both functional and aesthetic benefits.

  • The dental crown procedure involves preparing the tooth, making an impression, and placing a temporary crown, followed by the placement of the final dental crown in a subsequent visit.

  • Dental crown benefits include restoration of tooth function, aesthetic improvement, protection of weak teeth and long-lasting durability.

  • Proper preparation for a dental crown procedure can include understanding the procedure, discussing options with your dentist, addressing existing dental issues, and planning for recovery time.

  • Post-procedure care for dental crowns involves regular cleaning, avoiding hard and sticky foods, scheduling regular dental visits, and using a mouthguard if you grind your teeth.

Understanding the Dental Crown Procedure

A dental crown procedure involves placing a cap-like restoration over a damaged tooth, such as a tooth weakened by decay or as a final restoration of a tooth after root canal treatment. The crown restores the tooth’s shape, size, and strength and improves its appearance, enhancing the overall aesthetics of teeth.

Here are five reasons why dentists recommend this procedure:

  1. Tooth Decay:
    Dental crowns are often used when decayed teeth have become too weak for a dental filling. This is a common dental procedure that helps restore the tooth structure and prevent further decay.

  2. Tooth Damage:
    If a tooth is cracked or broken, a crown can provide protection and prevent further damage. This is particularly beneficial for a chipped, cracked, or worn-down tooth.

  3. Aesthetics:
    Discoloured teeth can be covered with a custom-made crown to improve the appearance of your smile. This can significantly enhance the aesthetics of teeth and the whole dental arch.

  4. After a Dental Implant:
    A dental crown is placed on top of a dental implant to provide a tooth-like shape and structure for function. The crown is attached to the artificial tooth roots, providing a natural appearance and function.

  5. Large Filling:
    A dental crown can offer additional support when a tooth has a large filling. This is especially useful when dental fillings alone can’t restore the full function of the tooth.

Who qualifies for dental crowns? Here are some considerations:

  • Decayed Teeth:
    If your tooth has extensive decay and a filling isn’t sufficient, you may qualify for a dental crown. This can help protect the remaining tooth structure and prevent the need for root canal therapy.

  • Weak Teeth:
    A dental crown can strengthen teeth weakened by decay, cracks, or root canal treatment. This provides a wide range of protection for the regular tooth, preventing further damage.

  • Dental Implant:
    If you’re replacing a missing tooth with a dental implant, a dental crown will be needed to complete the procedure. The crown serves as the visible part of the tooth, providing a natural look and feel.

  • Discoloured Teeth:
    If teeth whitening isn’t effective, a dental crown can improve the appearance of your teeth, giving you a more beautiful smile. Crowns can be used to cover a discoloured tooth, and they can be matched to the colour of your natural teeth, providing a seamless look.

The Benefits of Getting a Dental Crown

Dental crowns offer a host of benefits, both functional and aesthetic. They are a versatile treatment for a variety of dental issues. Here are eight key benefits of getting a dental crown:

  1. Restoration of Tooth Function:
    Dental crowns restore the function of decayed or damaged teeth, allowing you to eat and speak normally. They restore the proper shape and structure needed for a fully functional bite.

  2. Aesthetic Improvement:
    Dental crowns improve the appearance of teeth, whether it’s a discoloured tooth, a tooth with an unsightly filling or a misshapen tooth. They can be made to match the colour of your natural teeth, providing a seamless look. With a dental crown, you can achieve a beautiful, natural-looking smile.

  3. Protection of Weak Teeth:
    Dental crowns protect weakened teeth from further damage. They are often used to protect fractured teeth or a tooth that had a root canal procedure. This offers long-term protection for the tooth, preventing further decay or damage.

  4. Long-Lasting Restoration:
    With proper dental crown care, crowns can last for many years. They are a durable tooth restoration, offering long-lasting protection for your teeth.

  5. Custom-Made for Comfort:
    Each dental crown is custom-made to fit your tooth accurately for comfort and a natural feel. This customisation contributes to improved aesthetics and superior comfort.

  6. Variety of Materials:
    Dental crowns can be made from various materials, including ceramic, zirconia, and composite resin crowns, allowing patients to choose the crown that suits their needs and budget. Your dentist can guide you in choosing the right material for your oral health care needs.

Preparing for Your Dental Crown Procedure

Proper preparation can make your dental crown procedure go smoothly. Here are eight tips to help you prepare:

  1. Understand the Procedure:
    Familiarise yourself with the dental crown procedure. Knowing what to expect can help reduce anxiety.

  2. Discuss Your Options:
    Talk to your dentist about the different types of crowns available. Discuss the pros and cons of each material, including ceramic crowns, zirconia crowns, and composite resin crowns.

  3. Check Your Dental Health:
    Address any existing dental issues, such as gum disease, before the procedure. This will help toward the success of the dental crown placement.

  4. Prepare for Tooth Sensitivity:
    You may experience having sensitive teeth after the tooth preparation stage. Plan to eat soft foods and avoid hot or cold food and drinks.

  5. Arrange Transportation:
    You might need someone to drive you home after the procedure, especially if sedation is used.

  6. Plan for Recovery Time:
    Although recovery from a dental crown procedure is usually quick, taking it easy for a day or two is a good idea.

  7. Follow Pre-Procedure Instructions:
    Your dentist may provide specific instructions, such as avoiding certain foods or medications. Be sure to follow these instructions.

  8. Ask About Aftercare:
    It is important to understand the necessary dental crown care after the procedure. This can help prolong the life of your crown.

What to Expect During the Dental Crown Procedure

Knowing what to expect during the dental crown treatment can help alleviate any concerns. Here’s a general overview:

  • Tooth Preparation:
    The dentist will prepare your tooth for the crown. This may involve removing decay and reshaping the tooth.

  • Impression-Making:
    A dental impression or 3D model of your tooth will be made. This is used to create a crown that fits your tooth accurately.

  • Temporary Crown Placement:
    A temporary crown will be placed in the meantime to protect your tooth while the final dental crown is being made.

  • Permanent Crown Placement:
    The dentist will remove the temporary crown at your next visit. They will then cement the final dental in place.

  • Adjustments:
    Your dentist may make adjustments so that the tooth crown fits correctly and feels comfortable.

Every patient’s experience may vary slightly based on their specific dental needs and the type of crown used. Always consult with your dentist for the most accurate information.

Post-Procedure Care for Your Dental Crown

After your dental crown procedure, it’s important to take proper care of your new crown to maintain its function and aesthetics. Here are eight tips for post-procedure dental crown care:

  1. Oral Hygiene Routine:
    Regular brushing and flossing help maintain good dental hygiene. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily to keep your crown from decay and other complications.

  2. Avoid Hard Foods:
    Avoid chewing hard foods with your crowned tooth. This can help prevent damage to the crown.

  3. Regular Dental Visits:
    Schedule regular check-ups with your dentist. They can monitor the condition of your crown and address any issues early.

  4. Wear a Mouthguard:
    If you grind your teeth at night, consider wearing a mouthguard. This can protect your crown from excessive wear.

  5. Avoid Sticky Foods:
    Sticky or chewy foods can pull at your crown and potentially dislodge it. Avoid these types of foods.

  6. Use a Special Toothpaste:
    To prevent scratching the crown, it is important to use non-abrasive toothpaste. Brushing with fluoride toothpaste is also advised to strengthen the surrounding teeth.

  7. Limit Sugary Foods and Drinks:
    Excessive sugar can lead to tooth decay, which can compromise the health of the tooth under your crown.

  8. Don’t Use Your Teeth as Tools:
    Using your teeth to open packages or cut tape can damage your crown. Always use the proper tools instead.

Final Thoughts

As we wrap up this comprehensive guide, it’s clear that dental crowns play a vital role in restorative dentistry. They offer treatment for various dental issues, from protecting a weak tooth to improving the aesthetics of your smile.

Remember, dental crowns aren’t one-size-fits-all. Aside from the dental crown procedure, it would help if you also asked your dentist for advice on how to choose from the different types of crown materials, including all-porcelain crowns, metal crowns, resin crowns, and porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns. Each material has its unique advantages, and the choice depends on your specific needs, preferences, and budget.

At Hills Family Dental Centre, our dedicated team of professional dentists is here to guide you through every step of the dental crown procedure. We’re committed to providing you with a beautiful, natural-looking crown that not only fits well but also complements your smile.

Are you ready to transform your smile? We invite you to book a consultation appointment at Hills Family Dental Centre. You can reach our dental clinic by phone or through our website.
We look forward to helping you achieve a smile that’s not only healthy but also radiates confidence.