What is a crown?
A crown is a dental restoration that is made in a dental laboratory. After Dr. Heydari removes all the decay and prepares your tooth for the crown, he would then send an impression to the dental laboratory which then would design and mill the crown. Instead of making a crown by hand as it was done in the past, in modern dentistry crowns are designed by dental technicians on the computer and milled using a machine that is controlled by a computer. The final result is a crown that fits perfectly onto the prepared tooth. The crown would then be cemented and sealed onto the remaining tooth structure so to stop bacteria from penetrating the tooth and cause further tooth damage.
How do I know if I need a crown and not just a filling?
When a tooth is damaged so much that it cannot hold a filling (usually when the cusp of a back tooth is damaged) or a large portion of a front tooth is involved, a full coverage crown is a better choice. If we try to do a filling instead of a crown for large areas of cavities or breakages, the filling will fall out and we will then have to do the crown anyway. A filling is bonded to the natural tooth structure and is a good application for a small cavity or damage but if it is large a crown is a much better choice.
Do you use different crowns for front and back teeth?
Yes. For front teeth, as we would be concerned about your smile, Dr. Heydari would do more aesthetic crowns that would mimic the appearance of natural enamel. For back teeth we would do crowns that would be able to withstand the forces from the bite, but even in those situations we would usually use a tooth-colored crown that would mimic the shade of the neighboring natural teeth.