Porcelain Dental Crowns
Tooth Caps Restore the Appearance and Function of Your Child’s Tooth
A dental crown, also called a tooth crown or tooth cap, is a tooth-shaped covering we cement onto a damaged or decayed tooth to restore it to its original shape, appearance, and function. We choose materials for crowns on front teeth that will blend into the rest of the smile.
Once the tooth has been examined and filled, the children’s dentist will create a mold of the tooth receiving the crown and those immediately surrounding it. This mold will then be used to create a crown that will perfectly fit and blend in with your child’s other teeth. For primary teeth, (baby teeth) we use prefabricated crowns that come in many sizes and we will choose the crown that best fits your child’s tooth.
When Is a Tooth Crown Needed?
One of the most common procedures here at Smile Center for Kids is placing a crown. Our pediatric dentists will place crowns to help out with a number of different dental health problems your child may have, such as:
- Protecting a broken tooth or one that has been severely worn down.
- Covering misshapen or severely discolored teeth.
- Protecting a weak tooth from decay or holding parts of a cracked tooth together.
- Restoring an already broken tooth from further damage. (Brushing twice a day and flossing daily is still important, however. Harmful bacteria are still a problem for the surrounding teeth and gum tissue.)
What Are Crowns Made From?
Crowns are made from different types of material. We use porcelain or white zirconia crowns (made of zirconium oxide) for the anterior (front) teeth and stainless steel crowns for the back teeth. We do not use metal crowns on the front teeth because the goal is to restore the normal appearance of the smile.
Benefits of Dental Crowns From the Children’s Dentist
White zirconia is a good option because it is strong and doesn’t gain sharp edges and corners like porcelain with wear and tear. For the back teeth with flat chewing surfaces, stainless steel is a good material due to its strength and marginal adaptability.
There are also several benefits to choosing porcelain:
- The material is both strong and low-maintenance, making it a great choice for children.
- It protects the damaged tooth from further damage or decay and may even reduce sensitivity to temperature changes.
- The crown will match the natural teeth and resist staining. That means your child can enjoy their favorite foods and drinks without fear.
- Porcelain crowns are beautiful! Your child will feel happier and more confident with a smile they aren’t worried about showing off.
- They are more cost-effective than all-porcelain crowns.
How Long Do Dental Crowns Last?
A crown on a baby tooth typically lasts until the tooth falls out naturally, while a crown on a permanent tooth can last between five to fifteen years depending on wear and tear and the patient’s oral health habits. To help ensure that your child’s dental crown lasts as long as possible, encourage them to avoid chewing ice and other hard materials. A teeth-grinding or nail-biting habit would also wear away at the crown (as it would to their natural tooth material).
Does Getting a Tooth Cap Hurt?
As with getting a filling done, the tooth to be crowned will first be numbed with local anesthetic. Once anesthesia has been achieved, getting or replacing a crown should be a relatively pain-free procedure. Sedation is available if needed, and we use gentle techniques to keep your child comfortable.
Your child’s tooth might feel strange for a while as the numbing wears off. Over-the-counter children’s acetaminophen or ibuprofen can help if they experience any pain in the days following the procedure. Some soreness around the gums can occur for 2-3 days after crown placement. It should go away on its own, but if it persists or worsens, bring them back to see us.
Does Your Child Need a Crown to Complete Their Smile?
The children’s dentists at Smile Center for Kids are experienced working with young patients and placing crowns. We look forward to helping your child, and you’ll be glad you chose Smile Center for Kids to restore your child’s precious smile!