Dental Crown Procedure

Dental Crown Procedure


Dental crowns are a restorative treatment used to repair a tooth that has fractured or been treated with root canal therapy. A tooth with extensive decay may also be fixed using a dental crown when a composite filling will not suffice. Depending on the equipment at your dental office, your dentist may be able to complete a crown in one visit but if they use a dental lab for crowns, you will need two visits.


What is the procedure for dental crowns?

If your dentist determines that the best treatment option is a dental crown, they will begin your treatment by taking an impression of your mouth which will be used by the lab to fabricate your crown. If your dentist has the technology to make your crown in-office, they will scan your tooth with a camera that captures all the same anatomical features as impressions. This is called a digital impression!


Once the impression has been taken, they will apply a topical numbing agent to the gum tissue at the site being treated. This allows a little comfort while the local anesthetic is administered. The local will provide complete numbing so that you do not feel anything during the procedure. Then, your dentist will use a drill to remove any decay as well as a small amount of enamel from the whole tooth. Removing the enamel allows the dental crown to fit snugly over the infected tooth without being too tight and crowding adjacent teeth.


If your dentist uses a dental lab to fabricate your crown, they will place a temporary crown and send your impression to the lab, then have you come back a couple of weeks later to have the permanent crown placed. If your dentist has the technology to fabricate your crown in the office, they will mill your permanent crown before placing it on your tooth in the same visit.


In the event that you had root canal therapy on the tooth to be treated, your dentist will want to restore the tooth a couple of weeks after your root canal is completed. This gives the tooth time to calm down and ensures that you are not experiencing any pain or sensitivity before your new crown is placed.


After your crown is placed, you will still be a little numb when you leave the office. The anesthetic should wear off within a few hours at which point you will be able to better feel your bite and determine if anything needs to be adjusted. Your dentist will do their best to make sure the fit is spot on before your leave, of course, but sometimes it is hard to really tell how everything feels for the patient while they are numb. Occlusal adjustments are a common and quick follow up visit.


It is usually safe for you to eat immediately after a dental procedure but you should take care if you are still numb to ensure that you do not bite your tongue or cheek! Dental crowns are a great way to save a compromised tooth and have the potential to last a lifetime with proper care and oral hygiene.


How Long Do Dental Crowns Last