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Causes and Treatment of Damaged Dental Crowns

By Eugene D. Stanislaus on June 05, 2014


Woman with a Damaged Dental CrownDental crowns offer a variety of cosmetic and restorative uses to patients. They are capable of restoring a tooth that has weakened due to wear, decay, or injury. When porcelain is used as the material in dental crowns, they offer cosmetic benefits as well; they can blend in seamlessly with surrounding teeth so no one can tell that a crown has been placed over an existing tooth. Still, even though crowns are a versatile treatment, they are not expected to last forever. For most patients, dental crowns last for at least 10 years, and in many cases longer. But eventually, patients can expect their dental crowns to wear out or crack, or they may develop tooth decay on the tooth underneath the crown. At Brooklyn Heights Dental, a modern cosmetic dentistry practice in Brooklyn, patients can have their damaged dental crowns replaced with porcelain crowns of the highest quality.

Causes of Damaged Dental Crowns

Dental crowns may become damaged, cracked, or dislodged from the teeth for various reasons, including:

  • Biting down on hard foods, such as candy, seeds, or popcorn kernels
  • Biting down on hard objects, such as ice, pen caps, or fingernails
  • Chewing on sticky foods such as caramel or taffy
  • Habitual grinding of the teeth, a condition that is called bruxism
  • The passage of time, which results in daily wear of the dental crown

In some cases, the dental crown itself remains intact and in place, but the tooth underneath suffers damage. In these cases, the crown must be removed and replaced so the tooth can be treated. The tooth may become damaged due to:

  • Failure to brush the teeth twice a day, once in the morning and once at night
  • Failure to floss daily
  • Consumption of acidic or starchy foods, which are more likely to cause decay

Signs of Damaged Crowns

Patients may not always notice the signs of a cracked or damaged crown. That is why it is important for patients to visit the dentist every six months; during the dental appointment, the dentist will check the crown for signs of damage, and examine the health of the underlying tooth structure. If the dentist notices a problem, he or she will recommend the appropriate course of action.

Sometimes, patients do experience symptoms of dental crown damage. Possible signs to look out for include:

  • Tooth pain of the crowned tooth: The underlying tooth structure may be sensitive if it is exposed to hot and cold foods, or foods that are more difficult to chew
  • A dislodged crown: If the crown is moved out of place, patients may feel it with the tongue or when they bite down
  • Chips or cracks: Patients may notice that the surface of the crown is not as smooth as it once was

If you suspect that your crown has suffered damage, schedule an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.

Dental Crown Replacement Treatment

If your dental crown has been damaged, your dentist will remove the crown, and clean the underlying tooth surface. Impressions will then be taken of the treated tooth so the crown can be fabricated at a dental lab. Once the crown is ready, it will be cemented onto the tooth.

Contact Brooklyn Heights Dental today to schedule an appointment.

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