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Dental Crowns:
Restore and Protect a Damaged Tooth

Why are dental crowns needed?

At our practice in San Antonio, TX, we offer dental crowns to restore and protect a damaged tooth. A dental crown -- sometimes referred to as a cap -- fits over an entire tooth so that, once the crown is cemented in place, it permanently protects that tooth at and above the gum line. Crowns can strengthen a tooth as well as restore its shape and improve its appearance.

Some of the most common reasons for using dental crowns include:

  • Holding together a weakened or broken tooth
  • Covering teeth with root canals or extensive fillings to prevent further damage
  • Restoring partially broken or worn teeth
  • As support for a dental bridge
  • Correcting discolored or misshapen teeth
  • Capping dental implants

Crowns may be permanent or temporary, and may even be used on primary teeth of children in certain situations. While crowns may be made from many different materials, porcelain has the closest resemblance to natural teeth, so it’s used most often for crowns that are visible when you smile.

What are dental crowns made from?

  • Porcelain or ceramic crowns provide the most natural look and can be used by people with allergies to metals
  • Stainless steel crowns are typically used as temporary measures, since these can be prefabricated and fit quickly, while waiting for permanent crown manufacture, for example
  • Porcelain over metal crowns may be used for bridges
  • The new advanced porcelain materials these days allow use to little to no metals

What should I expect when I get a crown?

Your first appointment may assess your suitability as a candidate for crowns, though this may already be done during a regular visit to River City Dental Solutions. Once the decision to proceed is made, Dr. Shields or Dr. Perry remove some of the enamel or reshape the existing tooth to make room for the crown. Or they may add filler material to build up a damaged tooth.

Once the tooth is prepared, an impression is taken for the dental lab to construct the crown. A temporary crown is put in place to cover the tooth for the weeks it usually takes to receive the finished crown back from the lab. Your next appointment tests the fit of the permanent crown, and if all is well, it’s cemented in place.

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Dr Perry is a great dentist. Very kind and informative. I feel like he is personally invested in my health. He always takes the time to sit and discuss any issues I'm having - I never feel like they're rushing me out.

-Channa B.