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Many patients rely on dental crowns as a restorative procedure to preserve their natural teeth. Although they appear to be a great option, dental crowns can cause more damage to natural teeth than many realize.
Dental crowns are tooth-shaped caps that are placed over natural teeth. Crowns are typically used to restore the shape and size of natural teeth. Made from ceramic, porcelain, and metal, crowns are primarily for retention rather than being completely restorative. For a crown, a patient’s tooth still needs to be in his or her jaw in a condition good enough to support the crown. Different types of crowns are problematic in different ways:
- Porcelain crowns are highly brittle, can crack under pressure, and cracked porcelain can further damage other surrounding teeth.
- For porcelain and metal combinations, fragility is not an issue, but cosmetic appearance is, as they often look unnatural.
- Some patients may be allergic to the metals used in porcelain and metal crowns. These crowns are made with gold or metal alloy, which are far more likely to trigger allergic reactions than titanium, which is used in dental implants.
Dental crowns come with risks when used as a restorative procedure. In some instances, dental crowns that cover the natural tooth cause the tooth to decay or may hide decay in the tooth. They may also shift and push into other teeth.
- Dental crowns may cause disease and infection. Once the crown is placed over the tooth, the tooth can begin to decay or spread infection.
- Furthermore, it is hard to spot any decay under a crown.
- This may eventually cause the tooth to have to be extracted and replaced.
Patients who wear crowns also complain of discomfort while chewing and sensitivity to hot and cold liquids and foods. Some patients may even develop sensitivity in the gums as a result of crowns.