Crowns are used to restore damaged or decayed teeth. They can also whiten teeth that are discolored due to that damage or decay. But can you whiten crowns down the road? Here’s a closer look at what crowns are and whether you can whiten them.
What Are Crowns?
A crown is a tooth-shaped cover that fits snugly over a damaged or decayed tooth. Crowns are also known as caps. They can be made of many different materials including ceramic, porcelain, zirconia, and metal. They are meant to last at least seven years, but they usually last much longer than that.
Why Are Crowns Used?
Crowns are necessary in situations where a tooth is so badly damaged that it cannot be fixed with a filling. They serve to hold together parts of a cracked tooth, hold a bridge in place, and cover misshapen and even discolored teeth.
What’s the Procedure for Placing Crowns?
If you’ve come in for an appointment and we’ve determined crowns are the best course of treatment for you, we’ll first assess the damage or decay of the tooth. If you are getting a crown placed because of decay, we’ll need to remove the affected tooth structure. Depending on how severe the dental issue is, we might have to perform a root canal procedure. If there isn’t much of the tooth is remaining, we may need to build up a foundation to support the crown.
Once the tooth is free of the decaying material and is structurally sound, we’ll file down the tooth slightly so that the crown can fit over it. We’ll then take an impression of the tooth and send it to a lab to make the replacement. This may take a couple of weeks, so we’ll provide you with a temporary crown in the meantime. When your permanent crown is ready, we’ll call you back in to see us. We’ll remove your temporary crown and fit the permanent one over your tooth to make sure it’s the right fit. We can make any adjustments that you need during this appointment. Finally, we’ll bond the crown in place and make sure the look and fit are natural.
Can I Whiten My Crowns?
Now that you know what crowns are made of and how we place them, let’s talk about teeth whitening and your crowns. You cannot whiten crowns because the materials used to make them do not whiten like natural teeth. However, the crown itself can be made into any shade that you’d like when the lab makes it. If you think your crowns need to be brighter, make an appointment with us and we can discuss creating new crowns that are as white as you desire.
At Paris Mountain Dental, we’re dedicated to helping you achieve the smile you want. Call us today to make an appointment!