Sometimes, despite our best attempts, our teeth still become badly damaged or decayed. When this happens, we at Riverstone Family Dentistry want you to know we're here with an option: crowns (a.k.a. caps). These are tooth-shaped covers that are placed over your badly damaged (even decaying) tooth.
How a Crown Will fit in Your Mouth
Before we put a crown on your tooth, we'll first give you a shot of a local anesthetic like lidocaine. As such, you won't feel any pain while we're working in your mouth to place your crown. However, once the local anesthesia wears off, your tooth might be sensitive. You might also feel some soreness in the gums surrounding the tooth where we placed the crown. This pain is very minimal and shouldn't last for long.
If you still have some sensitivity, it may be caused by the tooth your crown is biting against. We can check to make sure that this isn't happening and make any necessary adjustments. Even if your crown is a bit too high, once it's adjusted the pain should subside within a week or two. At this point your crown should start feeling like any other, normal part of your mouth.
Choosing the Right Type of Crown
You'll find that there are several different types of crowns, all of which will provide you with an effective solution when necessary. These include gold, stainless steel, porcelain (a.k.a. all-ceramic), and metal - among the most popularly used types today. There are also several things you should take into consideration when you're trying to choose the best type of crown for your teeth. For instance, while a gold crown offers the longest lifetime and the most predictable service for your teeth, not everyone wants a piece of shiny gold in their mouth. In this case, you should know that you can get the same great benefits from an all-ceramic crown, but you'll also enjoy the lifelike appearance it has.
How Long you Should Expect Your Crown to Last
While porcelain crowns look the most like your teeth, they're more brittle than any metal or composite that's used for manufacturing crowns. This means they'll chip easier, which is why they're not recommended for your back teeth. Instead, you'll want to use porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns in this region of your mouth. Otherwise, you can expect your crown to last 5-15 years. Some may last as long as 25-30 years though.
You'll know when your crown needs to be replaced. There are several signs such as your gum tissue starting to recede in that area of your mouth, leaving behind a dark margin along your gum lines there. Make sure you get your crowns fixed immediately when this happens because it can lead to an infection. You may also notice that your crowns are too worn and thus have become cracked.
It's important to investigate this treatment option before delving into it thoroughly. While there's much information that's been shared here, you're bound to have some questions still. We're here to help. All you have to do is pick up your phone and call us here at Riverstone Family Dentistry at (360) 326-1443.