Has your dentist recommended you have a dental crown placed? Do you know that entails?
There are different materials used to fashion dental crowns. Unless you have received a dental crown in the past, you have probably not given much thought to the material used to make one. If you have not received extensive dental work, it might not even be clear when someone might need to get a dental crown.
Why do people get dental crowns?
A crown is a prosthetic tooth that fits over your existing tooth. They consist of a variety of materials, and the choice is an important factor in how the crown functions. When tooth decay becomes more serious, a dental crown may become necessary. Many dentists, after performing a root canal to remove infected dental pulp, place a dental crown on the tooth to protect it from further damage. Dental crowns can also be used aesthetically to restore a broken or chipped tooth.
How to choose the material in your dental crown
There are many different types of materials used to make dental crowns. Each type of crown has its advantages and drawbacks. Some considerations might be if you have any allergies to metals or how close the tooth getting the crown is to the front of your mouth, so you might decide to get a crown made of a less visible material.
Gold is a common material for crowns. Gold alloy has been used for years in dental implants, and it is one of the strongest choices. Another advantage is that gold is relatively inert around biological tissue, meaning that it is easy on the cells of your mouth. It does not cause any allergic reactions or inflammation. Gold alloy is strong enough to resist teeth grinding, so might be a good choice if you experience this condition.
Another option is porcelain. Porcelain is the best cosmetic option as it looks and feels the most like natural tooth enamel. It is also less sensitive to changes in temperature, so it will not feel too hot cold like its gold counterpart. There is a major downside, however, as porcelain fractures very easily, requiring a new crown if it breaks.
There are a few solutions to the issue of frailty in porcelain crowns. Porcelain can be combined with metal to create a crown that is porcelain fused to metal, or PFM, crown. Moreover, it can be mixed with Zirconia. Both of these options fix the issue of porcelain fragility while maintaining the great natural look of this material. For those with a metal allergy or sensitivity, porcelain with zirconia will be the option of choice.
Discuss your options
Ultimately, the choice of your dental crown material will be a mutual decision between you and your dentist. Be sure to ask your dentist which material is best for your specific situation. It is important to be as informed as you can be before making the decision.
Always remember to maintain proper and regular oral hygiene, as it can prevent the need for a dental crown entirely.
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