In order to restore a tooth’s strength, shape and size, and improve appearance, a crown (cap) is put in place. The crown fully encases the visible section of the tooth. Crowns are applied for an array of reasons. They can be used to protect weak teeth, restore broken or severely worn teeth, and even protect a tooth that recently underwent a root canal. Crowns are also used to improve tooth appearance for cosmetic reasons such tooth discoloration.
Crowns can be made of a variety materials to best serve your needs and budget. Metal crowns are the longest lasting. Since they will not match the natural tooth color, they are best for unseen teeth near the back of your mouth. Porcelain fused on metal is a nice option for teeth in the front or back. The porcelain on top can be matched to nearby teeth for a more natural look. The downside is sometimes the metal can be seen near the base of the tooth. The least expensive option is an all-resin crown. Although these crowns are not as expensive as other materials, they tend to wear down and break more easily. If you’re looking for the most natural looking crown, go with ceramic or porcelain. The ceramic/porcelain crowns have the best natural color which is matched to the rest of your teeth and blends in more. Since these do not contain metal, they are great for patients with metal allergies. The downside to these type of crowns is that they are not as strong as porcelain-metal crowns. Ceramic/porcelain crowns are great for front teeth.