Dental Crowns: What Are They, Types, & Procedure | EVDP Mesa Dentist

Dental Crowns: What Are They, Types, and Procedure

Woman smiling with teeth

Dental crowns are one of the tooth restoration solutions offered by dentists and recommended to those with aesthetically displeasing or severely damaged teeth. This is usually applied when there’s extensive damage in the teeth, such as when they are weakened, fractured or poorly shaped. In certain cases, the dentists will recommend this procedure if the patient has severely discolored teeth or after undergoing a root canal. Such is necessary to seal and protect the teeth.

What Are Dental Crowns

Tooth crowns are permanent and fixed prosthetic solutions. They are not removable like dentures. They are cemented on the natural teeth and may be removed only by the dentist if situations call for such.

A crown is used as a “cap” to cover the fractured or damaged tooth. It does not just strengthen and restore the damaged tooth; it also enhances its shape, alignment and appearance. It may even be used to restore and strengthen implants. Crowns match the color of the natural teeth so that it will look as real as the original as possible. Most affordable dental crowns are made of ceramic or porcelain. However, other materials are also available, such as acrylic, metal alloys and gold. They make the tooth strong and attractive.

Benefits of Dental Crowns

Crowns are popular among patients whose teeth have been cracked, chipped or suffered from decay. Affordable dental crowns replace the natural surface of the fractured or damaged teeth. They also restore the function of the affected teeth and protect the root canal. The great thing about this procedure is that it only requires a short recovery time. So you will be able to smile as naturally as you can, with confidence, in no time.

Dental crowns look as real as natural teeth. They also feel like one, so you won’t have to worry about their function. They function like real teeth, but stronger and as reliable. With crowns, you will be able to speak normally and eat confidently. When they are placed, crowns and caps enclosed the entire natural tooth or remaining parts thereof, in case the teeth have been chipped or fractured. The people around you will not even notice if it’s real or not, because crowns really look and feel like natural teeth.

If you are thinking about the budget, don’t worry, as there are affordable dental crowns you can avail yourself of.

There are various reasons why you would need a crown. The following are just some of the benefits you get if you have crowns:

  • It serves as a large filling
  • It protects the weak tooth from further damage
  • You can attach a bridge to it
  • It restores fractured teeth
  • It covers dental implants and restore their structure
  • It repairs poorly shaped tooth and covers discoloration
  • It is essential in root canal treatment

Dental Crown Procedure

The dentist will evaluate your teeth first. Before the crown placement, the dentist will reduce the size of your natural tooth, or what remains of them, in order to make space for the crown. After taking impressions of your teeth, the dentist will have your tooth crown fabricated in the laboratory. While waiting for the permanent crown, the dentist will give you a temporary, affordable dental crown so that you won’t have to go around wearing a broken smile. Meanwhile, the dentist will schedule an appointment for the crown placement. Once the permanent crown is made, it’s time to get them in place. The procedure only takes a short period, as well as the recovery time.

Types of Dental Crowns

Choosing the right dentist requires a lot of research and contemplation. You want a dentist that know their craft to the core. There are different types of dental crowns with various pros and cons, and thus, it’s important for patients to know before choosing the proper crown. Keep in mind that the wrong type of material can be a headache for your teeth.


The gold material is commonly used for the crown on implants and cavities. It’s very hardy and can last a longer period of time. The hard material can withstand grinding and biting. The great part is that it’s gentle on opposing teeth and severe grinding. It is strong and thin so it can help preserve the healthy structure of the teeth. The cementation process is much efficient and has reduced sensitivity in comparison to other crowns like the porcelain. The gold material is best used for the back teeth where people wouldn’t see it when you smile.

Even though the gold material is durable and gentle, but it still has a couple of drawbacks. It can increase teeth sensitivity during extremely hot or cold temperature. This is mainly because of its temperature conduction ability. Plus, some patients are allergic to gold material so it can result in some harsh reactions. Another problem is that it’s quite visible if you have it on the front. Because Gold has a different color tone than our natural teeth, it will definitely stand out. Gold can leave micro-gaps on your teeth which can make you vulnerable to decay. The gold material is not suitable for patients with metal allergies and the front teeth where it can be visible.

Porcelain / Ceramic

Porcelain blends very well with our natural teeth. It produces a very realistic and elegant cosmetic result. It does not conduct extreme temperatures, therefore reduce the issue of sensitivity. It does not cause a reaction to people with metal allergies. It is highly recommended for people who need a crown in the front teeth where it’s visible for everyone. Plus, people with metal allergies can definitely consider porcelain.

The problem with porcelain is that it’s very fragile. It can fracture and break easily, so it’s not good for people who grind their teeth like crazy. Another issue is that more tooth structure would have to be removed, so that can weaken your natural teeth. It’s not suitable for patients who have weak, fragile tooth or grinds their teeth constantly.

Dental Composites

If you are sensitive to both porcelain and gold, you can try dental composites. They are softer than porcelain and less reactive than gold. It is an excellent and hardy material that can last for a long time. Its toughness and durability are highly recommended for patients with high decay rate. If the budget is an issue, this material is more affordable than gold and porcelain. It’s highly recommended for patients with metal sensitivities and problems with porcelain. The major drawback is that dental composites require constant replacement because it has weak restorative properties.

Porcelain Fused Zirconia

This material is strong and durable like the gold material, so it’s less likely to fracture. Its translucent property makes it cosmetically favorable. It also goes well with glass ionomer cement to reduce the sensitivity. The material is also more affordable and is digitally scan, so it has accurate margins for your teeth. The main drawbacks are that it’s not suitable for partial tooth restoration and can cause issues to patients who are metal sensitive.

FAQs on Dental Crowns

Dental crowns can be used in many different situations and give you plenty of options to choose from. Prioritize your oral health and continue reading for everything you need to know about dental crowns.

  1. What are dental crowns? WebMD at: defines a dental crown as, a tooth-shaped cap that is placed over a tooth — to cover the tooth to restore its shape and size, strength, and improve its appearance. The crowns, when cemented into place, fully encase the entire visible portion of a tooth that lies at and above the gum line.” A dental crown is basically a permanent covering that goes over an existing tooth for any number of reasons.  A dental crown is a useful tool that your dentist can apply if needed.
  2. When are they needed? Dental crowns can be used for many reasons. Some patients will opt for a crown for cosmetic reasons.  A crown can be used to cover a discolored or malformed tooth.  Dental crowns can also be utilized to assist a tooth suffering from decay.  If your tooth is damaged or cracked your dentist may suggest a crown in order to help “save” the tooth.
  3. What is the procedure for dental crowns? The dental crown process will usually require two appointments. Your first visit will consist of getting a temporary crown and you will have impressions taken of the tooth that will be receiving the crown.  You may also have impressions taken of the surrounding teeth to make sure that your new crown will not impact your bite.  The information taken at your first appointment will be sent to a lab where your customized dental crown will be made.  During your first visit your tooth will also be prepared for your new crown.  Depending on the reason for the crown and condition of the tooth it may need to be filed down or built up in preparation for the new crown.  Talk to your Mesa dentist about the procedure to make sure you understand and are comfortable with all the steps in the process.
  4. Are there different types of crowns available? Yes, you have several options when choosing your dental crown. Colgate’s oral care website explains the different crown types.
  5. What is the cost? The cost of dental crowns vary widely. The cost can depend on what type of crown you decide to get as well as how much, if any, your insurance company will cover.  Discuss the cost of your dental crown with your dentist in advance and check to see if your insurance company will cover any portion of the expense.  Because permanent crowns are made at a specialized facility and are customized to your tooth they can be expensive.
  6. Are they painful? Dental crowns are fitted and then cemented over your teeth. You need a perfect fit to prevent food and bacteria from seaping into the crown.  During the procedure your dentist may use something to numb your tooth to prevent any discomfort.  You may experience some sensitivity after you receive your new crown.  Talk to your dentist about any discomfort.  The solution may be as simple as using toothpaste for sensitive teeth or your dentist may need to make adjustments to your new crown.  If you have any pain contact your dental professional.
  7. Are there alternatives to dental crowns? Dental crowns are used in specific situations, such as helping to preserve a tooth or for cosmetic reasons. Talk to your dental professional about the need or want of a dental crown.  If you are considering a crown for cosmetics, would teeth whitening procedures be an option first?  If there is tooth decay, could a filling be a solution?  Everyone’s situation is different.  Your dental expert will be the best person to advise you on your options.  He or she will be able to discuss all the possibilities and help you make the best choice for your oral health.
  8. Do I need to care for my dental crowns? Yes! You will want to practice good oral hygiene including your crowns.  Keeping your teeth clean and healthy will help keep your crown and the areas around it healthy.  Also, be sure to visit your dentist regularly as part of your oral health care plan.

Getting Dental Crowns

Nothing beats prevention and proper oral care. You can take important steps in preserving your oral health, such as going to the dentist every six months to undergo checkups and teeth cleaning. However, sometimes, no matter how we care about our teeth, unexpected things happen, like when you accidently knock out your tooth or got one fractured. Aside from accidents, severe tooth pain and broken filling are other common dental emergencies. If emergencies like this occur, you must not waste time. Go to the dentist right away.

There are certain things you must do while you’re still not in the dental office. Calling the receptionist and informing him or her of the situation helps, as the latter can explain to you the necessary steps you must take while you’re still not getting the dental attention you need. If you have totally knocked out your tooth, place it in a glass of milk to preserve its life. The important thing is that you go to the dental office as soon as possible as time is highly important here. Once you are in the office, the dentist will examine the situation and explain dental restoration options that suit you best, like affordable dental crowns.

There are so many great choices out there, and it can be very overwhelming to see which one is right for you. We can help you find the crown of your dreams. Our expert dentist will access your dental health to determine which material is suitable for your crown. Our thorough assessment will ensure that you leave the office with full confidence that we will restore your smile.


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