A tooth crown can survive a lifetime of use, but sometimes it can suffer unfortunate damage. If you damage a tooth crown, the chances of repairing it depend on the level of damage and the type of dental crown.
What is a dental crown?
A dental crown covers the tooth over the gum line to restore the appearance and function of the teeth. A dentist recommends a crown if a filling is not enough to repair a damaged tooth.
If the tooth cracks due to a blow to the face, a crown can hold the tooth in place and prevent further breakage. Crowns can also be used to mask stained or discolored tooth, place a bridge or fortify a weak tooth.
Making the crown
First, the dentist will cut down the size of the tooth to make the crown fit. An impression of the teeth will be made and sent to the lab for crown preparation. When awaiting a new custom crown, the dentist will place a temporary crown on the tooth. Once the crown is ready, the permanent crown will be bonded into place to replace the temporary crown.
How can you damage a tooth crown?
Crowns are strong, but accidents always happen. Also, some poor habits are not always healthy for the teeth.
Causes of crown breakage include:
- Trauma from a fall or blow to the face
- Teeth grinding
- Normal degradation
- Biting on hard objects
You may not be able to prevent a fall or a punch, but you can watch the materials you chew. Do not open bottles or bags with your teeth. People dealing with teeth clenching or grinding may get a mouth guard from the dentist to protect their teeth at night.
What to do if you break or chip a dental crown
If you damage a tooth crown, you need to contact your dentist immediately to schedule an appointment. Sometimes, you may need to visit an urgent care dentist.
While you are waiting for a dental appointment, you may suffer tooth sensitivity depending on if the tooth pulp was affected by the damage.
You need to check the affected area. Examine the crown to see if any part of it is missing or displaced. If the crown is loose enough, you can remove it. This will stop you from accidentally swallowing it.
Clean your mouth with warm water. If the injury caused bleeding, you can place a piece of gauze on the affected tooth and apply pressure. If an appointment with the dentist is not possible on that day, you can get dental cement from the closest drugstore to protect the tooth.
Repairing the crown
The dentist may be able to restore a chipped crown, depending on the severity of the damage and the amount of the crown lost. If the chip is not extensive, the dentist may use resin for repair.
In some instances, the crown may need to be smoothened and reshaped. If the damage is too severe, a new crown may be necessary.
Do you need to repair your crown?
Is your crown loose or damaged? If so, call our office to schedule an appointment. This will eliminate any pain and restore your smile.
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