A dental crown is a permanent restoration used to restore the natural shape, size and function of a compromised tooth.
When a natural tooth has extensive decay, wear, cracks, large compromised old fillings, or has recently had a root canal treatment, a dental crown is commonly recommended to preserve the integrity of the tooth. In some circumstances, dental crowns are a great option for cosmetic modification of severely discolored, misaligned or poorly shaped teeth.
Dr. Mazen Natour uses only all-porcelain crowns at his Manhattan dental clinic. All-porcelain crowns match most closely the natural color and appearance of dental enamel. Dental enamel is the layer covering natural teeth.
In addition, all-porcelain crowns do not have some of the disadvantages of porcelain-on-metal crowns, such as allergies to the metal, or the unaesthetic dark line next to the gum line.
A typical crown restoration requires two office visits.
- The patient is numbed using local anesthesia in the area of the tooth to be treated
- The natural tooth is prepared to receive the crown, by cleaning up all decayed portions of the tooth, and placing build-up material, if needed for tooth retention.
- A final impression is taken. Our dental lab technicians use that impression to precisely fabricate a custom-made crown.
- A temporary crown is placed at the end of this visit to protect the tooth. The temporary crown is made of acrylic-based material.
- The temporary crown is removed.
- The permanent porcelain crown is cemented in place.
- Minor adjustments are commonly made to ensure a proper occlusion (bite).
The best way to care for dental crowns is the same as caring for natural teeth. Proper brushing, flossing, and a regular professional cleaning at the dentist office will give a long life to your new crown.
- Discomfort and sensitivity – it is common to have some discomfort and sensitivity after receiving a permanent crown. The discomfort normally resolves on its own within a few weeks. Pain or sensitivity that occurs when biting down is normally due to the crown being too high. If that occurs, please come back to the office so the bite is adjusted.
In rare instances, a tooth that started with a large cavity may become more sensitive than usual after placing the crown. The tooth will be evaluated and a root canal may be needed.
- Loose / fallen crown – over time, it is possible that the cement washes out from underneath the crown. If left untreated, this allows bacteria to seep in causing further tooth decay. The best way to avoid that is to see Dr. Natour regularly. A regular routine cleaning, x-rays and check up will diagnose the issue before it causes extensive decay.
If a crown falls off completely, please contact our office immediately. While the crown can be cleaned and temporarily placed back using over-the-counter temporary dental glue, the tooth will still be exposed to bacteria and further decay. The permanent crown must be professionally recemented, and sometimes replaced altogether.
Most dental insurance plans cover dental crowns when crowns are needed to restore teeth with advanced decay or fractures, with the typical coverage ranging in the 50% – 80%. The coverage varies by plan, and is subject to certain restrictions. The best way to determine the insurance coverage for dental crowns is by submitting a pre-authorization request. The office of Dr. Mazen Natour will handle all insurance matters for its patients. Please call us if you have any questions about your coverage.