An Introduction to Cosmetic Dentistry: Facts, Questions and More

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How to Know Your Crown Needs to be Replaced

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Dental crowns are caps, often made of porcelain, that are bonded over your natural tooth. While they last a long time, they don't last forever. Here are some ways to know that your dental crown needs to be replaced.

There is Decay Underneath the Crown

A common reason you might need to replace your dental crown is because there is decay underneath it. Oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups are vital when you have a dental crown. With proper care of your teeth, you can clean debris and plaque from your teeth and gum line to avoid decay. Unfortunately, there are some instances where it still develops. When decay forms on the tooth underneath the crown, it is often removed. Some crowns can be removed, set aside, and re-bonded without having to make a new one. Though this depends on the age and condition of the crown, and whether it was affected by the decay.

The Dental Crown is Cracked or Loose

Again, dental crowns last a long time, but they won't last forever. After about a decade or so, you might notice that your crown is starting to deteriorate or becoming loose. If this happens, it is often because the materials are wearing away and you need to have a new one placed. It is important that you see your dentist for a new crown before the current one breaks or pops off. This will prevent damage to the underlying tooth and help keep you from discomfort of not having the crown to protect your natural tooth. As soon as notice that it is loose, cracked, or showing signs of wear, consult your dentist to get impressions done and replace the crown with a new one. If the damage seems substantial, consider contacting a 24 hour dentist.

There is an Infection of the Tooth or Root

You will also need to have the crown removed if your dentist finds an infection of the natural tooth beneath the crown, the gums, or the root. Infections can be caused from decay not being treated if you ignore it, but also from bacteria getting trapped and many other reasons. Pay attention to possible signs of dental infection, such as having pain that radiates around multiple teeth, a bad odor or taste in your mouth, or swelling in your lymph nodes or cheek. Let your dentist know right away so they can provide the right type of treatment. Many dental infections require removing the dental crown and either completing a root canal of the natural tooth, if it has not been done already, or choosing a tooth replacement option.