If you have a tooth that’s infected, cracked, or broken, you may need a dental crown. Covering a damaged tooth with a crown lets you save as much of your tooth as possible.
Crowns, also known as dental caps, are designed to look and feel like your natural teeth. They sit directly on top of the healthy part of your tooth to protect it and make it stronger. Your dentist may recommend a crown to:
- Replace a large filling that’s wearing down or leaking
- Build up a tooth that’s broken or decayed
- Strengthen and protect a tooth after a root canal
- Anchor a dental bridge
- Cover a dental implant
- Repair a chipped or cracked tooth
- Improve your smile
What happens when you get a crown?
To prepare a tooth for a crown, your dentist will remove parts of the tooth that are infected or damaged. A crown is custom-made to fit over the healthy, remaining part of your tooth. It matches your other teeth in color, size, and shape.
After your dentist fits the crown over your tooth, he or she will make sure it feels comfortable and looks natural before cementing it permanently onto your tooth.
How to care for a crown
If you take care of your crown, it can last for many years. Foods that are hard or sticky can cause the crown to become loose. Teeth grinding and decay will also harm your crown.
Make regular appointments with your dentist to have the crown checked and cleaned along with your other teeth. This will improve your overall dental health.