What Is A Dental Crown?

A dental crown can be decorative, but more often than not it is use as a protective cap placed on the head of a fragile tooth. The dental crown completely encapsulates this part of a tooth above the gum. If you’re looking for a location near by that can offer you these medical marvels at a reasonable price, then you’ve found the best location.

At Tustin Smile, we offer high quality dental services to our esteemed patients, including the fabrication of dental crowns that have longevity and strength. Thanks to the skills of Amit Shah, D.D.S, you can be at ease while you get your crowns.. These are made from a synthetic material called Zirconia that has an appearance similar to natural teeth.

Types of Crowns – Porcelain, Ceramic, Metal – Available at Tustin Smiles, Orange County CA

At Tustin Smile, we also have different types of crowns available, based on their intended duration of use.  

  • All-Metal Crowns – These crowns are prepared solely with metal alloys. Although they possess excellent strength, they have poor esthetics. Thus, they are rarely used, and reserved mostly the for restoration of posterior teeth, which are not typically visible.
  • All-Porcelain Crowns – These crowns possess the best esthetics, since they are prepared from tooth colored ceramics. Porcelain crowns are reserved for patients who are extremely conscious about their smile and facial esthetics.
  • Metal-Ceramic Crowns – These crowns combine the strength of metal crowns, and the esthetics of porcelain crowns. They contain a framework of metallic alloys, over which a layer of porcelain has been attached.  
  • Permanent Crowns – Ordinarily, crowns are used for permanently restoring a crooked or chipped tooth with posts. They are cemented into place with the help of a dental adhesive. Only a dentist can remove them when required for repair.
  • Temporary Crowns – Temporary crowns are occasionally used during the construction of a permanent crown. Hence, these crowns are disposable, and made of cheaper materials like stainless steel.

Why and When to Crown a Tooth?

At Tustin Smile, we recommend capping a tooth when there is a:

  • A technical (restorative) requirement
  • A cosmetic requirement

Often times, both of these situations will be simultaneously satisfied with a tooth crown.. Therefore, the cosmetic effect will also be considered when implementing restorative requirements. This can include whitening the teeth, and even lengthening them in certain cases. Luckily, this procedure doesn’t cause any pain in our patients.


Technical Requirements

At Tustin Smile, we may advise crowning your tooth in the following situations:

  • Weak Teeth – If any of your teeth are weak, cracked, or otherwise damaged, they can likely be saved if crowned.
  • Following Root Canal Treatment – A restored tooth, especially after a root canal treatment, may be so weak that it will not be able to bear chewing during meals. In this kind of situation, the tooth should be capped by a skilled dentistry professional.
  • Heavily Filled Teeth – If a tooth has been restored with a large filling but has left little original material, the tooth may not survive. Such a tooth must be crowned.

Dental crowns restore your ability to speak, your beautiful smile, and can allow you chew food properly.

Normally, crowns are applied to permanent teeth. However, under certain conditions, baby teeth may also be crowned. One such situation is when a child is considered a high risk case for tooth decay. In such a case, expensive crowns are not used. As an example, a tooth so badly damaged that it cannot safely support a filling would receive a dental crown. Crowns may be applied to protect teeth of children with a very high risk of tooth decay. In such cases, steel crowns may be recommended.  

Cosmetic Reasons for Crowning Teeth at Tustin Smile, CA

  • Esthetics – Crowns can improve the looks of badly shaped teeth.
  • Masking Permanent Teeth Stains – Discolored teeth can also be covered by crowns. Other alternatives are available.
  • Longevity – Strong crowns can prove to be long lasting, and rarely, if ever, falls off.

Crowns for Children’s Teeth at Tustin Smile

Normally, crowns are applied to permanent teeth. However, under certain conditions, baby teeth may also be crowned. One such situation is when a child is considered a high risk case for tooth decay. In such a case, expensive crowns are not used. As an example, a tooth so badly damaged that it cannot safely support a filling would receive a dental crown. Crowns may be applied to protect teeth of children with a very high risk of tooth decay. In such cases, steel crowns may be recommended.

Merits and Demerits of Different Materials

  • Stainless Steel Crowns – These crowns don’t cost much, and a variety of sizes and shapes are available and ready to be built. Normally, they are used in two different situations – on baby teeth when a child is very prone to tooth decay, or with adults when teeth have been prepared. In either case, the permanent crown is made in the lab.
  • Gold and Other Metal Alloy Based Crowns – Gold has been in use for ages for a variety of reasons. Their relatively low price in situations makes it useful to for dentists, and it can be alloyed with other metals to give it extra strength. Other base metals can sometimes be used in place of gold. These crowns have good strength against wear, and can bear pressure of chewing forces well. Gold is also kind to the opposing tooth, and does not cause wear in it either. Because of their strength, metal alloy crowns can be made with thin walls. This is an advantage because less material will have to be shaved off the tooth. However, metallic alloys are characteristically colored and may not be as esthetically acceptable. But they can be used for molars which are not normally visible in other cases. Gold and other metals are good conductors of heat, and the wearer may feel sensitivity to cold for the initial few weeks following the procedure.
  • All-Resin Crowns – These are the least expensive type of crown available. However, they are not very strong. They can easily fracture, and tend to wear down over a period time. These crowns can also be stained.
  • All-Ceramic (All-porcelain) Crowns – This kind of dental crowns can be very expensive. But if esthetics is a major consideration in your decision, then these can be an option. They can offer the best color match with your other teeth, because porcelain is translucent and reflects the natural color of the teeth underneath. Porcelain is a poor conductor of heat. Hence, the initial period sensitivity to hot and cold is negligible for a time. They do not affect allergies, as some other materials dp. But they wear out faster than most other materials. They are also liable to crack under chewing forces, especially in case of bruxism. For these reasons, porcelain crowns on any molar in need are made thicker, necessitating greater trimming of enamel from the teeth. These are normally used on front teeth, where esthetics are more important.
  • Zirconia or Milled Crowns – If you are worried about esthetics but finance is not a consideration , you could always go with Zirconium crowns. They are the most expensive kind of crown, but being translucent, provides a very good color match with your other teeth. Being metallic, they are not as susceptible to cracks as ceramic crowns are. For these reasons, Zirconia is currently the craze in crowns. CAD / CAM facilities allow zirconia crowns to be milled while the patient waits. This can be saved for a second visit.
  • Crowns made from Porcelain Fused to Metal – Fusing porcelain over metal (which may be zirconia) helps overcome the brittleness disadvantage of all-porcelain crowns, while still  offering good color matching to the nearby teeth. They are the best esthetic choice after all-porcelain crowns. However, the metal underlay may become visible near the gum line if the gum recedes. Also, the underlying metal (normally a gold alloy) makes the cap look less natural. Zirconia base can be milled, and will be cheaper than a gold base.

Application Procedure of Dental Crowns

In the first visit, your teeth will be prepared to receive the crowns. This means trimming their enamel to allow for crown thickness. After that impressions of your teeth are taken and sent to the lab for crown molding. When crowns are received, they are cemented in place in the second visit. If you’re concerned that the procedure hurts, don’t worry. The application of your crown will not be painful in the slightest, and you can sit relaxed while Dr. Amit Shah performs the procedure. In case of the use of zirconium, the crowns can be milled using CAD/CAM while patient waits. The time required for the average healing process is short, with little after care being necessary. It won’t be long before you’re out of recovery and have full choice over what to eat.

Cost of Dental Crowns

Dental crowns range in price, typically based on the material being used. As both a cosmetic and practical addition to your mouth, the price for the procedure is more than worth the work. It just means you need to find the best dentist that’s nearest you to help – if you’re spending the money, then you need to make sure it’s spent wisely. Your closest choice (and the clearest) is with Dr. Amit Shah and his staff at Tustin Smile.

Life Span and Repair of Crowns at Tustin Smile

Crowns can last over seven years, and if they are properly maintained, may even last a life time. However, there is a possibility of the cement under the crown getting dissolved, leaving the crown loose. If this happens, it may ultimately come off. If a crown comes off, the patient must not force it back on, because it may hold traces of cement inside and damage the tooth. Porcelain crowns can crack, and will need to be fused if so. Repair of dental crowns can be performed at the dental laboratory in certain cases. If you have damaged your crown, please send it to our office, and we will get it repaired for you. If a crown is so severely damaged that it cannot be repaired, we will just replace it with a new one.


Visiting Us at Tustin Smile

A beautiful smile is awaiting you! If you’re wondering where you can find a good dentist near me who can give you amazing dental crowns then set up an appointment with us today. Our lead dentist Dr. Amit Shah at Tustin Smile (close to Santa Ana) can help give you the gift of a new smile.