A dental crown is a complete covering made over a damaged tooth to protect it, improve the appearance and restore the original function. When cracked or damaged by decay, teeth can be replaced or covered with this procedure, giving your smile a natural and fully functional look.
Crowns & Onlays
A crown is a complete covering over a natural but damaged tooth that protects it and restores it to normal function and look. It is typically made from porcelain fused to gold, but can also be all porcelain, all gold, or an alternative metal like zirconia depending on the case.
A bridge is made of the same material but replaces a missing tooth by having a “bridging” tooth attached to two crowns either side of a gap. Ie. It is 3 or more crowns fused together to replace missing teeth.
How long will it take?
There are usually two visits for a crown to be made. The first is normally about 90 minutes; which involves preparing the tooth, taking an impression, and fitting a temporary crown.
The second appointment is to fit the crown which takes about 45mins
The procedure is done under local anaesthetic so it is not expected to be painful during its preparation. There may be some tenderness and sensitivity of the tooth and gums following, however usual over-the-counter pain relief is more than enough to control such inconveniences.
Full gold crowns are the most durable and have the longest service life of any dental crown. They are made of a high tensile gold alloy that cannot chip or crack, and hence are the go-to material for molar crowns in people with a heavy bite or people who grind or clench their teeth.
They are, however, gold in colour, so not particularly appealing in teeth that are seen when a person talks or smiles.
Zirconia crowns are tooth coloured ‘metal crowns’ with excellent strength and aesthetics. They are commonly used with implants, and in situations when an extra strong tooth coloured crown is needed. They need more ‘reduction’ in natural tooth, so cannot be used for every case.