Dental crowns are a type of cap that covers an existing tooth or implant. Many people mistakenly believe that crowns are made of gold or other metals, and worry about how having a crown may affect their appearance. Fortunately, patients have a variety of choices when it comes to selecting the best crown for their smile. This guide can help you prepare for a dental crown procedure. 


When is a Crown Needed?

Dental Image

There are various reasons why a dentist may recommend that a patient undergo a dental crown procedure, including:

  • To cover a tooth which is too broken or decayed to hold a filling
  • To protect a weakened tooth from breaking
  • To strengthen a tooth that has undergone a root canal
  • To support the attachment of a bridge or denture
  • To disguise a stained or misshapen tooth
  • To cover a dental implant. Learn more about implants here.


Dental Crown Materials

Several materials are used to make dental crowns. Your dentist may recommend one option over another depending on your dental issues.


Zirconia Crowns

Over recent years, zirconia crowns have become more prevalent in dental crown procedures. Zirconia crowns are made from hardened zirconia dioxide, which has similar chemical properties to titanium. However, like ceramic and porcelain crowns, zirconia crowns resemble the natural appearance and texture of a tooth, but they are much stronger and more durable. 

They also pose less risk of inflammation as they are highly biocompatible. Despite zirconia crowns being relatively new to the market, they are offered by the experienced dental professionals at Sydney Dental Group.


All-Ceramic Crowns 

Ceramic and Porcelain dental crowns tend to be used for the front teeth as the colour, and the opalescent lustre easily blends with the surrounding teeth. These crowns may be more suitable for those who suffer from metal allergies.


Porcelain Fused to Metal Crowns

These dental crowns have a metal substructure and are covered with porcelain.

The metal gives the crown strength, while the porcelain façade blends well with the other teeth.

This combination of strength and aesthetics make these crowns suitable for many types of teeth.

However, occasionally the metal can show through the porcelain, giving the tooth a greyish hue or a dark shadow by the gum line can appear, especially if the gum recedes. 

Gold Alloy Crowns

A blend of gold, copper and other metals combine to make these highly malleable dental crowns. One of the most significant advantages of gold alloy crowns is their biocompatibility. They are also highly resistant to fracture and wear, causing minimal damage to the tooth below. Gold crowns are fantastic, though some people prefer the natural look of ceramic. 


Base Metal Alloy Crowns

Composed of non-noble metals, these dental crowns are corrosion-resistant and durable. They require minimal grinding of the natural tooth and, due to their soft nature, they are gentle on surrounding teeth even if a patient suffers from bruxism.


The Dental Crown Procedure

Completing the dental crown procedure involves 2-3 visits to our Dentist at Sydney Dental Group. During the initial consultation, our dentist Dr Jacob Stretton will examine your teeth and help you make an informed decision about the right type of crown for you. This decision will take into account the needs and capabilities of your teeth, your budget and your lifestyle. 

Achieving a precise fit is essential to a successful dental crown; without it, your comfort and the longevity of the crown are compromised. At Sydney Dental Group, we use digital scanning technology with the impressive Trios intraoral scanner. This is one of the fastest and most accurate scanners available. It is more comfortable for the patient than traditional dental impressions and ensures an accurate fit. 

After your tooth is measured, you may be fitted with a temporary dental crown which you will wear until your appointment to fit the permanent replacement. Computer-aided crown construction allows us to speed up the process without compromising the quality of the final product. Once the crown is ready, you will be able to check that you are happy with the shade match before the dentist fixes it in place.


Dental Crown Aftercare

For around 24 hours after the dental crown procedure has been completed, it is recommended to avoid eating sticky foods. You may find the gum is a little tender for a few days after the treatment, but you will quickly get used to the crown.

It’s important to remember that a crown does not protect a tooth from gum disease. You should continue to practise good oral hygiene, including brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and flossing, to avoid plaque getting to the tooth at the joint where it meets the crown. There are products, such as dental floss and mouthwash, that are specifically designed to help keep crowns and the surrounding area as clean as possible. Crowns typically last between 5 and 15 years, but with vigilant care, they can be with you for life.

If you believe that you may need a crown, our experienced dentist Dr Jacob Stretton at Sydney Dental Group in Baulkham Hills is here to guide you through your options, giving you access to advanced dental technologies. For more information, contact us on (02) 9158 6135.



Note: Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.

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