Understanding Dental Crowns: Benefits, Procedure, and Types

Understanding Dental Crowns

What is a Dental Crown?

A dental crown is a prosthetic restoration that covers and protects a damaged or weakened tooth. It is custom-made to match the size, shape, and color of your natural teeth, providing strength, durability, and aesthetic improvement. Dental crowns can restore the function and appearance of a tooth while preserving its remaining structure.

 When is a Dental Crown Needed?

  • Tooth Decay: Crowns are used when a tooth has extensive decay that cannot be repaired with a filling.
  • Fractured or Broken Teeth: Teeth that are cracked, chipped, or broken can be restored with crowns.
  • Root Canal Treatment: After a root canal, a crown is often placed to protect the treated tooth.
  • Large Fillings: When a large filling compromises the structural integrity of the tooth, a crown can provide reinforcement.
  • Cosmetic Enhancement: Crowns can be used to improve the appearance of misshapen, discolored, or severely stained teeth.

The Dental Crown Procedure:

  1. Evaluation: Your dentist will examine your tooth, take X-rays, and discuss treatment options with you.
  2. Tooth Preparation: The tooth receiving the crown will be reshaped to accommodate the crown’s thickness.
  3. Impression: An impression of your tooth will be taken to create a precise mold for the dental laboratory.
  4. Temporary Crown: While your permanent crown is being fabricated, a temporary crown will be placed to protect the tooth.
  5. Crown Placement: Once the permanent crown is ready, your dentist will remove the temporary crown and bond the permanent one in place using dental cement.
  6. Adjustment and Polishing: The crown will be checked for proper fit, bite, and appearance. Adjustments may be made, and the crown will be polished for a natural finish.




Types of Dental Crowns:

  • Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal (PFM): These crowns have a metal substructure for strength with a porcelain exterior for a natural appearance.
  • All-Ceramic or All-Porcelain: These crowns offer excellent aesthetics, mimicking the translucency and color of natural teeth.
  • Metal Crowns: Made of alloys like gold or base metals, they are known for their durability and strength.
  • Zirconia Crowns: These crowns are made of a strong ceramic material, providing both strength and esthetics.

Caring for Your Dental Crown:

– Practice good oral hygiene by brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily.

– Avoid chewing hard or sticky foods that may damage the crown.

– Schedule regular dental check-ups to ensure the crown’s stability and overall oral health.

– Wear a nightguard if you grind or clench your teeth to protect the crown from excessive force.

Benefits of Dental Crowns:

  • Tooth Protection: Crowns provide a protective layer over damaged or weakened teeth, preventing further decay, fractures, or wear.
  • Improved Functionality: Dental crowns restore the shape, size, and strength of damaged teeth, allowing for better chewing, biting, and overall oral function.
  • Aesthetic Enhancement: Crowns are custom-made to match the color and shape of your natural teeth, improving the appearance of discolored, misshapen, or poorly aligned teeth.
  • Durability: With proper care, dental crowns can last for many years, providing long-term functionality and aesthetics.
  • Versatility: Crowns can be used to address various dental issues, including tooth decay, cracks, fractures, large fillings, root canal-treated teeth, and cosmetic enhancements.
  • Stain Resistance: Depending on the material used, dental crowns can be highly resistant to staining, maintaining their color and brightness over time.

Risks and Considerations of Dental Crowns:

  • Sensitivity: Some individuals may experience temporary sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures after crown placement. This usually subsides on its own but can be managed with desensitizing toothpaste or dental treatments.
  • Allergic Reactions: In rare cases, individuals may have an allergic reaction to the materials used in the crown, such as metals or dental ceramics. It is essential to discuss any known allergies with your dentist.
  • Tooth Sensitivity or Nerve Damage: Preparing the tooth for a crown may involve removing a portion of the tooth’s structure, which can result in temporary or, in rare cases, persistent tooth sensitivity. In rare instances, nerve damage may occur during the preparation process.
  • Tooth Decay: While dental crowns protect the underlying tooth, proper oral hygiene is crucial to prevent decay at the crown’s margin or in the surrounding teeth.
  • Crown Failure or Damage: Although rare, dental crowns can fracture, chip, or become loose over time. This is more likely to happen with excessive force, grinding, or biting on hard objects.
  • Adjacent Tissue Irritation: In some cases, the gum tissue around the crown may become irritated or inflamed. Maintaining good oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups can help prevent or address such issues.

Remember, every case is unique, and your dentist will recommend the most suitable type of crown for your specific needs. If you have any questions or concerns, consult with your dentist, who will guide you through the process of getting a dental crown and help you achieve a healthy and confident smile.



Understanding Oral Cancer: Risks, Symptoms, and Prevention

Dental Patient and Dentist screening for Oral Cancer

Oral Cancer Awareness Day: Raising Awareness to Prevent and Detect Oral Cancer

Oral cancer is a potentially life-threatening disease that affects millions of people worldwide. It can occur in any part of the mouth or throat, including the lips, tongue, gums, and tonsils. Early detection of oral cancer is crucial for successful treatment and better patient outcomes. In light of this, dental organizations around the world observe Oral Cancer Awareness Day to raise awareness of this disease, its risk factors, and the importance of regular screening.

What is Oral Cancer?

Oral cancer is an abnormal growth of cells in the oral cavity or throat. It can manifest as a sore, lump, or discolored area in the mouth or throat. Oral cancer can spread to other parts of the body, including nearby lymph nodes, lungs, and liver, if not detected and treated early.

Risk Factors for Oral Cancer

Certain factors increase the risk of developing oral cancer, including:

  • Tobacco use: Smoking or using smokeless tobacco products like snuff, chewing tobacco, or dip.
  • Heavy alcohol consumption: Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol regularly.
  • Human Papillomavirus (HPV): A sexually transmitted infection that can cause oral cancer.
  • Sun exposure: Prolonged exposure to the sun can increase the risk of lip cancer.
  • Age: People over 45 are more likely to develop oral cancer.
  • Genetics: A family history of oral cancer or genetic syndromes like Fanconi anemia or dyskeratosis congenita can increase the risk of developing oral cancer.

Symptoms of Oral Cancer

Oral cancer may not always present symptoms in its early stages. However, as it progresses, symptoms may include:

  • A sore or ulcer in the mouth or on the lips that does not heal.
  • A lump or thickened area in the cheek, tongue, or throat.
  • Difficulty swallowing or chewing.
  • Persistent sore throat or hoarseness.
  • Unexplained bleeding in the mouth.
  • Numbness in the mouth or lips.
  • Loose teeth or dentures that no longer fit properly.

Oral Cancer Screening

Regular screening for oral cancer is an essential part of oral health care. During a screening, a dental professional will examine the mouth, tongue, and throat for any signs of abnormal growth or discoloration. They may also feel for lumps or enlarged lymph nodes in the neck. If oral cancer is suspected, the dentist may refer the patient to a specialist for further evaluation and treatment.

Prevention of Oral Cancer

Oral cancer is preventable in many cases. Here are some steps that individuals can take to reduce their risk:

  • Quit smoking or using smokeless tobacco products.
  • Drink alcohol in moderation or not at all.
  • Practice safe sex and get vaccinated against HPV.
  • Wear protective clothing and sunscreen when spending time in the sun.
  • Eat a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables.
  • Visit the dentist regularly for oral cancer screenings and dental cleanings.


Oral Cancer Awareness Day is an opportunity to educate the public about oral cancer, its risk factors, and the importance of early detection. Dental organizations play a vital role in raising awareness and encouraging individuals to take steps to prevent oral cancer. By working together, we can help reduce the incidence of oral cancer and improve patient outcomes.

Getting Started with Dental Implants

Getting Started with Dental Implants

Dental implants are an effective solution for those who have damaged or lost one or more teeth due to injury, disease, or other causes. They provide a secure, long-term solution for restoring your smile and improving the overall health of your mouth.

When considering dental implants, there are many questions to ask yourself and your dentist or periodontist. 

Here are some frequently asked questions about dental implants that may help you in making an informed decision:

What is the difference between dental implants and dentures?

Dental implants: A permanent solution for missing teeth, made from titanium and fused with the jawbone. They do not require removing or replacing like dentures and can last a lifetime if properly cared for. 

Dentures: Removable prosthetics that replace multiple missing teeth; however, they must be taken out at night and require ongoing maintenance and replacement.

What are the benefits of dental implants?

Dental implants provide many advantages over traditional dentures. They are designed to look and feel like natural teeth, meaning they blend in with your existing teeth and can be cared for just like natural teeth.

Dental implants are small, titanium posts that mimic the root structure of natural teeth. Unlike removable dentures, they don’t require adhesives or special cleaning agents to stay firmly in place.

Are you a good candidate for dental implants?

Most people with missing teeth due to injury, disease, or other causes are good candidates for dental implants. However, you should consult with your dentist and periodontist to determine if you are an ideal candidate. Generally speaking, suitable candidates must have healthy gums and adequate bone in the jaw where the implant will be placed. If these conditions are not met, you may still be a candidate for an implant, but additional treatments or procedures may be necessary before implant placement.

What is involved in the dental implant process?

The dental implant process typically involves several visits to your dentist and periodontist over several months. First, your dentist will refer you to a periodontist, and from there, you will meet with them to discuss treatment plan options and determine the next steps. 

The process generally goes like this…

  1. A referral from a general dentist or endodontist.
  2. The periodontist extracts the tooth.
  3. You let the area heal – I think it’s a few months.
  4. The periodontist places the implant and abutment.
  5. Three months later, your general dentist can place the crown.

If it has been determined that an implant is the best course of action, you will schedule your next visit. If your tooth hasn’t been removed or is still in place, your dentist or periodontist will extract the tooth.

During subsequent visits, your implant will be placed into the jawbone, and an abutment (which connects the implant to the replacement tooth or bridge) will be attached. After your implant has fully integrated with the bone and surrounding tissues, a crown or bridge will be added to restore your smile.

What is the cost of dental implants?

The cost of dental implants will vary depending on several factors, including your case’s complexity and how many teeth need to be replaced. Generally, a single implant can range from $4,000 – $6,500 per tooth, while multiple implants and crowns can range up to $30,000. Be sure to speak with your periodontist or financial coordinator about the specific costs associated with your case.

Will my insurance cover dental implants?

Some insurance providers may cover a portion of the cost, while others may not offer any coverage at all. Before beginning treatment, we recommend you check with your insurance company about out-of-network coverage. Your financial coordinator at the periodontal office can also recommend financing options if needed.

Dental Implant Specialists Near You

Dental implants offer numerous benefits, including improved oral health, increased comfort when eating and speaking, better facial volume, and greater self-confidence. If you’ve been considering dental implants but weren’t sure how to get started, now is the time to take action!

Contact Dental Health Associates today to learn how dental implants can help restore your smile and improve your oral health. We look forward to helping you achieve the best results possible.

Protect Your Teeth While Playing Sports

Protect your teeth mouth guards

There are few things more exciting than watching your child play sports. But as a parent, you must ensure your child is protected from dental injuries. Here are some tips to help you keep their smile safe.

Wear a mouth guard when playing contact sports.

Playing contact sports can be a great way to get physical exercise and enjoy some friendly competition, but it is important to bear in mind the potential for injury. The best way to protect yourself is by wearing a mouth guard. Not only do mouth guards shield your mouth from being directly impacted by another player or object, but they can also reduce the severity of injuries by cushioning any blows and absorbing energy before it reaches your jaw. Luckily, mouthguards come in all shapes and sizes, so you can find the perfect fit no matter what sport you play. With a mouth guard firmly in place, you will have less to worry about while playing contact sports and more time to focus on having fun!

Wear a helmet to protect your teeth.

Did you know that wearing a helmet not only protects your head, but it is also a powerful way to safeguard your teeth? Even if you think the risk of damaging your teeth is low, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. So, the next time you go on an adventure, don’t forget to wear a helmet.

Preparing for dental emergencies.

Be prepared for any dental emergency with the proper protection! Wearing a mouth guard and helmet when playing sports can help secure your teeth from injury, but what else do you need to know? Our emergency dental care services are here to provide all your needs if an unexpected incident should occur. From broken molars or chipped tooth enamel – we are here to give support whenever those pearly whites take a hit.

Thanks for reading, and we hope this information was helpful!