A dental crown
is an artificial cap that is cemented over a tooth to protect it from further decay and to fill out, or reshape the tooth to its regular form. Whereas a filling is injected in to the decayed area of a tooth, a crown caps it over, like putting the lid back on a bottle. They generally restore the natural look of the tooth, better than a filling. Dental crown materials and colors vary, but for general cosmetic reasons white crowns are common place, although some prefer gold. Whereas dental crowns may be placed over a whole tooth, veneers are only usually capped over a small portion of the front of a tooth. Despite the differences the terms are often intertwined.
Whether a dental crown is used or not remains solely on the condition of the patient’s tooth. If a tooth is severely damaged, it may need to be removed and completely replaced by an implant
. If the tooth is only very slightly decayed it can be a tossup between a filling and a full crown.
In cosmetic dentistry
crowns may be used simply for aesthetic purposes, because they can make all the teeth appear naturally even, and well shaped. They are usually used in conjunction with whitening procedures to give the perfect “Hollywood” smile. Crowns and veneers are commonly used for cosmetic reasons when the front dew teeth have become worn, and the enamel appears to be see-through at the tips.
When placing a crown over a tooth, a small piece of metal may be fused to the existing tooth, and the crown fused on top, or the crown may be cemented over the existing tooth if a lot of the original structure still remains.
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