If you have structurally damaged teeth, whether due to decay or trauma, a dental crown can help restore strength, function, and beauty to the affected teeth. Austin dentist Dr. John Schmid offers porcelain crowns as well as gold and porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns to meet the needs of all of his patients.
If you think you might be in need of a dental crown, don’t hesitate to contact Contemporary Cosmetic Dentistry at 512-329-5967 to schedule your appointment. We serve patients in Austin, Bee Cave, Lakeway, and other nearby areas of Texas.
What Is A Dental Crown?
A dental crown, also called a “tooth cap,” is essentially a false tooth that is placed over the top of your real tooth to protect it and restore its function. Crowns can also replace missing teeth. Dental crowns may be recommended in situations where:
- Your tooth is weak from decay
- Your tooth is cracked or broken
- You had a root canal
- You had an extensive cavity that required a large filling, and not much natural tooth is left
- Your tooth is severely discolored
- You are missing a tooth
Dr. John Schmid offers three different types of dental crowns: porcelain, gold, and porcelain-fused-to-metal. Porcelain crowns are the most natural looking, and are used by Dr. Schmid whenever possible. All-porcelain crowns mimic real teeth in shape, size, color, and translucency, and are the best option cosmetically.
However, porcelain crowns will not be the ideal choice for everyone. In some cases, gold or fused crowns may be recommended for greater structural support, particularly in load-bearing back teeth. Dr. Schmid will carefully assess your situation and recommend the best option for you.
Who Is a Candidate for Dental Crowns?
Most patients who have tooth decay or damage are good candidates for crowns. Some also decide to get a crown for its aesthetic benefits. Either way, having healthy gums is essential in order to be eligible for these dental restorations. If your gums are red, tender, or bleed easily, you may need to undergo gum disease treatment before you can get crowns.
How Long Do Porcelain Crowns Usually Last?
We know that you want to get the most out of your restorations. That is why porcelain crowns, with their 5 to 15 year lifespan, might be a great option. With proper care, good oral hygiene habits, and regular dental visits, your crowns may last for decades to come.
Keep in mind that it is not all about aftercare. Ensuring the long-term success of your dental crowns starts with your choice of dentist. A variety of factors, such as how your tooth is prepared, how impressions are taken, and how well the crown is made can all play a role.
Dr. Schmid strives for perfection in all these phases of treatment. He will put his extensive training, years of experience, and state-of-the-art dental technology to work for your smile.
Are There Any Risks Associated With Porcelain Crowns?
Dentists have been placing crowns for over 100 years. Crowns are recognized as a safe and effective way to restore the shape, size, and strength of compromised teeth. However, a small percentage of patients do develop problems with their restorations, such as:
- Discomfort or sensitivity
- Chips, wear, or damage
- A loose crown
- A dark line nears the gums
- Allergic reactions to metal or porcelain
Fortunately, most of these issues can be fixed in a single office visit. If something seems wrong with your dental crown, don’t hesitate to contact our practice for assistance.
Does the Dental Crown Procedure Hurt?
Getting a dental crown should not cause you any more discomfort than a standard tooth filling. In fact, thanks to modern anesthetics and techniques, most patients report that the process is quite tolerable.
Keep in mind that not getting a dental crown could be the most painful decision you make. Untreated tooth decay leads to ongoing discomfort, sensitivity, and other oral health issues. At some point, a more invasive procedure will be necessary to get your smile back on track.
The Dental Crown Process
Having a dental crown placed requires two trips to our Austin dental office. During the first visit, your tooth will be prepared for the crown and an impression of your teeth will be taken. This impression is sent to a dental lab so that your crown can be created for optimum strength and to fit well with your other teeth, and you are fitted with a temporary crown in the meantime.
Your second visit will be after your custom crown is finished. You will return to our office, and Dr. Schmid will replace your temporary crown with the permanent one. He will check to make sure the size, color, and shape are all correct, and you will also have a chance to view the crown and feel it in your mouth. If everything looks good, Dr. Schmid will cement your custom crown in place.
Caring for Dental Crowns
Luckily, dental crowns require very little special care. As long as you maintain good oral hygiene habits, your crowns should last for a long time. Dr. Schmid will give you detailed instructions on caring for your crown during your appointment, but some tips you should keep in mind include:
- Don’t use mouthwash that contains alcohol, as astringent ingredients can loosen the bonding holding your crown on
- Avoid chewing on ice, hard candy, pencils, or other hard surfaces
- Try not to eat too many sticky foods like taffy
- Floss using a gentle sliding motion, rather than lifting and pulling
In addition to these tips, you should be sure to visit Dr. Schmid every 6 months for a regular checkup and cleaning. During these checkups, he can also examine your crown and make sure it’s in good shape.
What Is Recovery Like From the Porcelain Crowns Procedure?
It usually takes a few days for the mouth to recover from getting a dental crown. During that time, it is natural to experience mild sensitivity and inflammation. If you are getting a crown on top of a dental implant or as part of a bridge, the healing time could be longer.
Keep in mind that your tooth might feel different after getting a crown. It should start to feel normal after a few days as you get used to its new shape and texture. However, if your bite still does not feel right after several days to a week, reach out to our dentist for a potential adjustment.
What Happens if I Damage My Crown After the procedure?
Modern dental crowns are incredibly durable and can stand up to daily wear and tear. However, they are not impervious to chips and cracks.
If you damage your crown, it may be possible to repair it with composite resin, as long as the problem is minor. Be advised that this is usually a temporary fix. If the damage is more extensive, the crown may need to be replaced.
Schedule Your Dental Crown Consultation
If you have weak, damaged, or missing teeth that could benefit from a dental crown, call Dr. Schmid at 512-329-5967 to schedule your appointment today. We serve patients in Austin, Bee Cave, Lakeway, and other nearby areas of Texas.