Putting a crown on a tooth is a restorative process that is most often used to fill in a tooth that is broken, worn or has portions of the tooth destroyed from tooth decay. A crown can also be used as a cosmetic restoration to improve the shape or strength of a tooth.
A crown will be “cemented” onto one of your teeth and will cover your entire tooth above your gum line. Your crown, after being cemented on, will act as your tooth’s new outer surface. Crowns can be created from porcelain, metal or both. Many people prefer porcelain because it looks like a natural tooth and is very strong but the metal material is often less expensive.
Crowns or onlays (partial crowns) are used on teeth when the tooth is not strong enough to hold a filling. A filling is applied directly on your tooth, in the office. A crown is created away from the office in a lab, to ensure that it fits your tooth perfectly. A dental laboratory technician uses an impression of your tooth to create the perfect crown for your tooth. A crown should not interfere with your bite or jaw movements and should function normally once the crown is placed.