Dental crowns, also commonly known as dental caps, are a form of dental restoration cemented to damaged teeth to encase them and protect them from further damage and improve their cosmetic appearance. The crown will fully cover the whole of the tooth protruding above the gum to offer complete protection form any further damage. In this sense they differ from other restorative measures such as veneers and fillings which only cover a certain portion of the tooth. Crowns are usually made from porcelain, metal or a combination of the two. Although patients with a more expensive taste may opt to have a gold or silver crown fitted.
There are many reasons why a dentist will fit a dental crown but the most common include to increase the strength of a damaged tooth; to restore the original shape of a tooth and; to improve the cosmetic or aesthetic appearance of a tooth. When a tooth has been cracked or fractured it can cause a great deal of pain and discomfort and can expose the sensitive inside to various stimuli. A London W1 dentist would therefore need to apply a crown to protect the central nerve of the tooth and restore the shape and strength of the original. Crowns are increasingly being made using the benefits of computer technology, which is able to sculpt a perfectly sized and shaped crown in as little as six-minutes from a single piece of porcelain. This new technology means that dental crowns will have little if any affect on the appearance of the teeth.
The application process of a crown does involve the removal of some enamel to allow the crown to fit over the tooth without being too big in the mouth. This does mean that all crowns are permanent but they are only ever used if the situation absolutely demands it. A dental crown can be an incredibly useful and strong way to rebuild a tooth and can last for up to twenty years if properly maintained.