Teeth Crowns and Caps

WHY DO I NEED A CROWN?

A Crown is simply described as a hat that fits on top of the prepared tooth. They are usually made for teeth that are severely broken down. The tooth is smoothed down to a peg shape and a very accurate impression is taken of the preparation. This impression is sent off to the technician and the crown is fabricated. Crowns are the strongest of restorations for broken down teeth because they wrap around the tooth and hold the remaining parts together. Crowns can be made of a variety of materials, including:

  • Porcelain fused to metal (usually white gold)
  • Ceramic fused to Zirconia (The most modern)
  • Gold Alloy
  • Acrylic or Composite resin made in the laboratory
  • Milled Ceramic made at the Chair side
  • Other metal alloys including chrome

The most successful crowns over the years are the first type where a white gold thimble is made on a copy of the tooth preparation and then ceramic is fired onto it in layers. Over the years it has been the most aesthetic of the crowns, and is certainly really strong but suffers from the fact that the gold is opaque and thus doesn’t let the light through. This means that if the gum shrinks back over the years, you often end up with a dark root showing above the crown. Modern Zirconia crowns have a very strong ceramic as the thimble which is transluscent, this allows the light to penetrate down the root and helps to stop the dark root problem.