What is a Crown?
A crown, sometimes called a “cap”, is a tooth–like covering placed over a carefully prepared existing tooth. Used to strengthen, restore or improve the appearance of your natural tooth, a crown is placed on an individual tooth much like a thimble over your finger. Crowns support the tooth when there is no longer sufficient tooth structure left to place a filling, and they may be used to protect the structure of a tooth that is fractured or broken.
Types of Crowns
Dental crowns fall into three categories: full metal, porcelain fused to metal and full porcelain. Your dentist will assess your dental health and discuss your options with you, but all three crown types have distinct advantages.
Precious metals have tremendous durability and are non-reactive. These characteristics make them a preferred material for dental crowns. Metal crowns offer outstanding longevity, but because they look nothing like natural tooth enamel, they are most often used for molars where they will not be as visible.
Metal and Porcelain Crowns
Porcelain fused to metal (PFM) conceals metallic surfaces under a ceramic layer that closely resembles natural tooth enamel.
Porcelain crowns have the most natural look and are generally indistinguishable from natural teeth. Due to advancement in ceramics they are every bit as strong as metal or PFM crowns.