Dental Crowns – Their Maintenance and Hygiene

For anyone who’s ever had issues with their mouth that required being fitted for crown, that doesn’t mean you can cut back on your oral hygiene. Unlike natural teeth, a crown won’t last forever with the proper care, but one can last for quite awhile if it is taken proper care of.

Whether it was through an accident that broke one tooth or a rampant cavity that claimed another one, many people have been saved from the ordeal of missing teeth by dental crowns.

Dental crowns are caps that cover or replace much of a missing tooth by being bonded to the remaining material using a special cement. Unlike direct methods of restoring teeth that involve work inside the mouth directly, a crown is made by creating a mold of a tooth outside of the mouth which is then inserted into the needed area. This allows the insert to be created out of metals or porcelain that could not be formulated inside the human mouth and then set into place. Often the most common material used for a crown is gold.

Dental crowns last for around 10 years on average, but its lifespan and sustainability is largely dependent on how well the individual takes care of them. With proper care and oral hygiene similar to what is necessary for natural teeth, metal or porcelain fittings can last for the life of the patient – sometimes as long as 50 years.

Typical factors that affect oral health, such as bacteria in the mouth from a lack of brushing and flossing, can also negatively affect artificial fittings. Basic brushing is expected, in most cases, to allow a typical fitting to last 10 years. Likewise, a lack of any brushing or related care can cause one to fail much sooner.

Gold fittings typically are the most durable because they are made from a single, solid piece of gold, which is an extremely solid and durable material. Porcelain models, including porcelain-fused-to-metals or PFMs, tend to be easier to break due to the brittle, breakable nature of the material. Porcelain is often desirable because it can be molded to create the look of a natural tooth and can mimic the feel of one’s surface due to the feel of the material.

One scenario where dental crowns undoubtedly assure the greatest longevity in tooth repair is following endodontic therapy, more commonly known as a root canal. Following this treatment, fittings of all materials offer the longest possible lifespan for teeth due to the fact that they serve to protect the weak, treated area from trauma and also serve as a sealant against various forms of bacteria.

In all cases and no matter the material used, the skill of the dentist performing the procedure is also paramount in the durability and effectiveness of the product.

Dental crowns can be a lifesaver in many situations, both functionally and aesthetically, but without the proper care they can cause problems as troublesome as the one they helped alleviate. Remember to always take the same care with them that you would without them and you may never notice the difference.