You will typically need two or more visits to your dentist to repair a severely decayed tooth with a crown.
Crowns may be made of porcelain or a metal base covered with a thin layer of ceramic that matches your teeth and looks like a normal, healthy tooth. Crowns for the teeth in the back of the mouth may be made of gold.
During your first visit, your dentist will take out the decay and make an impression of your teeth to create a mold used for making the crown. Your dentist will:
See pictures of a tooth and tooth decay.
During your second visit, your dentist will:
What To Expect After Treatment
Your lips and gums may remain numb for a few hours until the anesthetic wears off. To avoid injuring your mouth, be careful not to chew on your numb lip or cheek.
Why It Is Done
A crown is used to:
Dentists sometimes use crowns after root canal treatment to seal the tooth and prevent it from breaking.
How Well It Works
A crown will work just like a healthy tooth.
Crowns sometimes come loose over time, and you may need to get them cemented again or replaced.
If tooth decay is right next to the pulp, the pulp may not be strong enough to make healthy dentin, which surrounds and protects the pulp. If this happens, your dentist or endodontist may have to remove the pulp, or an oral surgeon may have to remove the tooth root.
If you have certain heart problems, your dentist may prescribe antibiotics before a dental procedure. Some procedures can cause bacteria in the mouth to enter the bloodstream and cause infections in other parts of the body. The antibiotics lower your risk of getting an infection in your heart called endocarditis. For more information, see People Who Need Antibiotics to Prevent Endocarditis and Procedures That May Require Antibiotics to Prevent Endocarditis.
What To Think About
If the decay is near the pulp and your dentist thinks the pulp might die, he or she might suggest taking out the tooth (extraction) and using a bridge or implant. If the pulp dies after you get a crown, you will need a root canal to remove the dead pulp.
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