What a Dental Crown Does
A dental crown is a protective cover for a tooth that is too weak to hold up against the force of your bite. This common dental restoration basically replaces the outer layer of your tooth and protects what is left on the inside so that you can keep using your tooth. You may need to get a crown if your tooth has been cracked or chipped, damaged by a large cavity or abscess, or weakened after root canal treatment. Crowns also offer cosmetic value. Even if your tooth isn’t structurally compromised, a crown may be a good choice if you simply aren’t happy with the current color or shape of a particular tooth. Crowns are also used to anchor dental bridges and restore dental implants.
Getting a Dental Crown: The Process
It normally takes two separate dental appointments to complete a new crown.
This is the process we use here at Brookside:
Prepare Your Tooth
First, the dentist will check your teeth and make sure they are clean and ready to go. Next, your dentist will prepare the tooth that needs a crown by removing the damaged parts and carefully shaping it into a solid base. Reducing your tooth like this eliminates the unhealthy tissue to improve the prognosis of your tooth, and it creates room for the crown to fit comfortably with the rest of your bite.
Design Your Crown
Immediately after shaping your tooth, the dentist will take a scan or mold of it and the surrounding teeth. This impression will be used to design your crown so that it fits perfectly on your tooth and feels natural when you bite down on it with the opposing teeth. This custom design process will ensure that your new restoration looks and feels just like a natural tooth. It takes around two weeks to create a new crown, so before you leave, we will fit you with a temporary crown to protect your tooth.
Place Your Crown
We will invite you back for your second visit where we will take off the temporary crown and place your permanent crown on your tooth to check the fit. If it looks and feels good, then we will cement it in place. Finally, the dentist will check to see how the crown fits with the rest of your bite, trim away excess cement, polish the edges, and floss around your tooth. We may even take a single X-ray to make sure the crown is seated properly. If we need to make any adjustments to the fit, we will take care of those during this appointment. That’s all! You’ll go home with a completely new tooth.
Cost of Dental Crowns in Allentown
Dental insurance coverage varies by company and benefit plan. At the time of your visit, a more accurate estimate can be given. If you don’t have insurance, then you might have to pay around $1,600 to $2,200. The exact cost varies from person-to-person, and even from tooth-to-tooth due to several factors.
Some of the things that will affect the cost of your dental crown treatment include:
- The type of crown you get
- Which tooth needs a crown
- The number of teeth that need crowns
- Whether your tooth needs additional treatment before getting the crown (like a root canal, posts, or a buildup to create a strong foundation)
- The use of other special supplies or equipment during your treatment
Does seeing the cost of a single dental crown put you off a bit? It’s normal to experience some sticker shock upon seeing the price. But it’s good to think about what could happen if you need a crown but let the price deter you from getting treatment. Your tooth’s condition will only get worse until you are forced to pay for a root canal or even to have your tooth extracted and replaced. A dental crown could help you hold onto your natural tooth for many more years and avoid the need for more expensive treatment.
While we can’t give you an exact estimate over the phone or here on our website, we can provide you with a quote if you come see us for a comprehensive dental examination. Your dentist will take a careful look at your teeth and let you know which unique factors will impact the cost of your care. We’ll provide you with a treatment cost estimate and help you work out the insurance and financing details.
Contact Us Today
to schedule an initial consultation & exam.
Do you think that you may need a dental crown? Book a visit with us and the dentist will take a careful look at your teeth, gums, and the fit of your bite. A full exam will help us get a complete picture of your dental health so that we can offer you informed treatment recommendations. We’ll also answer your questions and help you explore all potential treatment options, including the possibility of getting a dental crown.
Frequently Asked Questions
It depends. Root canal treatment renders teeth basically lifeless, and this leaves them dried out and brittle. That’s why most back teeth like molars need to be crowned after having a root canal. But teeth that don’t experience too much bite force may not need to be crowned.
A dental crown is a more comprehensive restoration than a filling, but it’s not necessarily better. It all depends on the situation. If your tooth has only a small cavity, then a filling is probably adequate and would be much more conservative than a whole crown. But if your tooth has been significantly damaged, then a dental filling won’t be strong enough to protect your tooth, and a crown would be the better choice.
No one needs to know unless you tell them! Dental crowns can be made from materials like porcelain that perfectly imitate the hue and translucency of natural tooth enamel. You’ll get to work with your dentist to design a crown that blends seamlessly with the shape and color of your natural teeth. It will look so much like a natural tooth that even you may forget which of your teeth is the one with a crown!
A post is a short little medical-grade post which is much smaller than a dental implant. The post can be cemented into a base on your tooth to reinforce it in preparation for receiving a crown. A post is sometimes necessary if the tooth that needs a crown doesn’t have enough natural tooth tissue left to support the crown.
Getting a dental crown feels about the same as getting a regular little dental filling. The dentist will administer a numbing injection to keep your mouth comfortable, and you won’t feel any pain while the dentist works. It’s normal to experience a little soreness or sensitivity when the anesthesia wears off and your tooth is still adjusting to its new surroundings. Our dental team will explain what you can do to minimize discomfort during this time.
A properly cared-for dental crown could last you 20 years or even longer. Factors like your oral hygiene routine, your diet, and even whether you grind your teeth can all impact the lifespan of your crown. Not all crowns make it to 20 years. If you get ten years out of your dental crown, then it will have served you quite well.
Simply care for your crown as you would any other natural tooth. Gently floss around it each day, brush it along with your other teeth, and schedule regular cleanings and checkups at the dental office. Our dentist will give you other suggestions for keeping your crowned tooth healthy and strong.