Alhambra Family Dentistry

Dentist located in Alhambra, CA

A chipped or cracked tooth may not seem like a major dental issue until you experience the problem yourself — even a tiny chip or minor crack can cause serious pain, making it difficult to eat and decreasing your confidence. The friendly team of dentists at Alhambra Family Dentistry in Alhambra, California provide a complete menu of cosmetic and restorative dental services including porcelain crowns to the men, women, and children in the greater Los Angeles area. To learn more, call the office or book your appointment online today.

Crown Q & A

What is a dental crown?

Your dentist at Alhambra Family Dentistry uses a porcelain crown, or cap, to restore strength and appearance to a tooth that’s worn down, cracked, or discolored. A crown is often the best solution for strengthening a tooth that’s been weakened by a large filling or too much dental work. Crowns can also repair and protect a decayed tooth that doesn’t have enough remaining tissue to hold a filling.

A dental crown hides a chipped tooth or protects a weak tooth that’s prone to breaking. Dental crowns can also:

  • Secure a fixed bridge, or several replacement teeth  
  • Repair a tooth worn down by grinding
  • Replace a misshapen or severely discolored tooth

Because porcelain crowns look like natural, healthy teeth, they’re also employed to cap off dental implants.

How long does it take to get a dental crown?

For most patients, a dental crown requires two office visits.

First appointment

During your first visit, your dentist starts by numbing the treatment area and removing any old restorations or decay from your tooth. Next, they file the tooth down a bit to prepare for the crown. If you have tooth decay, they remove the problem and fill the cavity before taking an impression of your tooth.

Finally, your dentist makes a temporary crown and fits it to your tooth. You wear the temporary crown for a few days while your permanent crown is custom-made by a highly trained technician in a dental lab.

Second appointment

During your second visit, your dentist removes the temporary crown, fits your permanent crown over your tooth, and cements it into place.

A customized crown should fit and match the color of your natural enamel perfectly, so you can expect your crown to blend in with your other teeth.

What is the best way to take care of a crown?

Crowns typically last five to eight years, but porcelain crowns can last much longer with good oral hygiene habits and regular professional care.

When you have a crown, it’s even more important to brush and floss twice a day. You should take extra care to remove plaque from the area where the crown meets your gums, either by flossing or using an interdental cleaning device such as an oral irrigator.

Consistent oral hygiene habits are especially important if your crown covers your natural tooth, because it’s still prone to decay.

To prevent your crown from cracking, avoid chewing ice or hard foods, and wear a mouthguard if you grind your teeth when you sleep.

To learn more about crowns, call Alhambra Family Dentistry or schedule an appointment online today.