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When teeth are affected by decay or trauma, it compromises overall oral health. At Fairfax Family Dental Care, our doctors use dental crowns to repair your teeth and help prevent future damage. A dental crown is a custom-made restoration that fits over the entire tooth structure. Crowns can also be used in conjunction with dental implants to replace a lost tooth. For over 30 years, our team has been providing top-tier dental care for residents of Fairfax, VA, and the surrounding communities.
In general, those considering dental crowns must have sufficient healthy tooth structure remaining. During a consultation at Fairfax Family Dental Care, our doctors can help determine if this treatment option is right for you. You may qualify for a dental crown if you have:
While crowns are a common restorative treatment option, they are also used for cosmetic modifications. For example, dental crowns may be used to conceal misshaped teeth. They may also be recommended when addressing intrinsic stains, or the type of discoloration that occurs deep within the tooth structure and does not respond to teeth whitening.
In most cases, dental crown placement can be completed in just two office visits.
Due to the advanced materials used in dentistry today, crowns look and feel incredibly natural. They are crafted to blend with your surrounding teeth, so no one will ever know you have had dental work. Dental crowns have an average lifespan of five to 15 years, but with proper care and maintenance, they can last over two decades.
Crowns can be fabricated from a wide range of materials, including metal, all-ceramic, zirconia, and porcelain-fused-to-metal. Most patients at our Fairfax practice choose a tooth-colored option for optimal aesthetics. In general, there are two primary types of crowns:
In most cases, dental crown placement can be completed in just two office visits. During the first appointment, the doctor visually assesses the treatment site and takes x-rays or scans to establish the severity of the problem. If the dentist determines that a crown is necessary, the first step involves removing a small amount of natural enamel. This prepares the tooth for bonding and makes room for your new crown. Any damaged portions of the tooth will also be removed at this stage.
Next, impressions are taken. These are sent to a partner lab where a trained technician crafts your new restoration. Crown fabrication usually takes between two and four weeks. In the meantime, a temporary crown will likely be placed to protect the tooth from further damage. When the dental lab sends your final crown to us, we will schedule you for a second office visit. During this appointment, the doctor checks the size, shape, fit, and color of your restoration, then bonds it permanently into place using high-quality dental cement.
Immediately following your dental crown placement, you may notice slight tenderness and sensitivity. These side effects are to be expected and should diminish within the first few days. Most patients are able to return to work and other normal routines right away.
While you are wearing your temporary crown, it is important to avoid hard or sticky foods that could damage or dislodge the restoration. If possible, you should chew on the other side of the mouth until your final crown is bonded into place.
If you have recently had a crown placed – or if you are about to undergo the procedure – you will want to protect your investment. Here are a few tips for keeping your restoration in excellent condition:
If you have a tooth damaged by decay or trauma, a crown could be an excellent solution for you. To learn more about dental crowns, or any of the other cosmetic or restorative options we offer, schedule an appointment today. You can contact our office online or call Fairfax Family Dental Care at (703) 385-0303.