Have you been told you need a dental crown or cap but don’t know what it is? If you have, we’ve provided you with brief information on what it is and what you need to know about getting a dental crown. Learning more about your procedure can help ease the anxiety or stress of having a cap placed on your tooth.
What’s the Difference Between a Crown and Cap?
Nothing. They’re two different words for the same procedure. A dental crown is a more technical term whereas cap is more of an informal word. They are both interchangeably used when referring to the process of encasing your tooth. Crown or cap is when the visible part of the tooth is encased from the gum line and above. This dental procedure allows the dentist to salvage the tooth than have to extract it completely.
When is a Crown Needed?
How do you know you need a crown? There can be several reasons you might need to get a cap for your tooth. But if you’re in need of a cap, it can be that you need to
- protect a weak tooth from decay or hold pieces of a cracked tooth.
- restore a broken or damaged teeth.
- support a tooth with a filling, if tooth can’t carry it.
- hold a bridge in place.
- improve on the cosmetic of the teeth.
It takes two dental visits to get a dental crown. During the first visit, your teeth will be examined and prepared if there is a need for a cap. X-rays will be taken of your teeth including the root to ensure there is no damage or further need of dental treatment. The dentist will numb the area to file your tooth down depending on the crown chosen or rebuild part of your tooth depending on the tooth decay. A temporary cap will be placed in the meantime. Temporary crowns are usually made of stainless steel or acrylic and hold in place with temporary cement.
On the second visit, your dentist will remove the temporary tooth checking the tooth and the permanent cap before placing it in. Once your dentist has verified and checked your tooth and cap, they will numb the area and permanently cement the crown down.
What Types of Caps can I Choose From?
Take into consideration the type of crown you are going to select, even though appearance will be a deciding factor, keep in mind the durability of the material you are choosing. There are three significant materials used to build a permanent crown and, they are:
- Ceramic – which is porcelain and can be adjusted to match your natural teeth color, however, they are quick to crack or chip if you’re not too careful.
- Metal Alloys – this could be gold, platinum, or non-precious metals. This material is both durable and compatible with your teeth meaning no damage is done to the tooth. The downside is they are visible whether in the front or back.
- Porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) – have a porcelain surface but a metal substructure. They are durable but still likely to chip or crack because of the porcelain.
Crowns are meant to last 5 to 15 years depending on how you care for it and the condition of the crown. Visiting your dentist for your annual check-ups is essential to the seeing the progression of your teeth and cap.
You want to ensure your teeth are healthy and don’t require further dental treatment. Getting a crown can be costly ranging from an average of $300 to $1700 for one crown. If your due for an annual check-up, contact the office of The Center of Dental Professionals today at 801-505-7125 or fill out our form here.