What to Expect When Getting a Crown

You come in for your routine dental checkup and during the exam the dentist says you need a crown. You’ve never had any major dental work so the first thing you probably think is “Why do I need a crown and is it going to hurt?”  In simplest terms a crown is necessary when a tooth is broken or has large failing restoration. A crown is a common dental procedure but if you’ve never had one and aren’t familiar with the process it might sound a little scary.

A crown procedure is usually broken down into two separate appointments. If you ever need to get a crown here’s what you can expect:

First Visit
The first visit is to prepare the tooth and take an impression for the permanent crown.  All of the decay and old filling material will be removed during this appointment. After the decay is removed the tooth will be shaped in order for the crown to be placed. Depending on how much tooth structure is lost in removing the decay, sometimes the tooth needs to be built back up using a filling material so that the tooth can later hold the crown. The next step would be to take an impression of the prepared tooth so that the crown can fit it just right. The shade of the new crown will be made to match the surrounding teeth. The patient will leave with a temporary crown to protect the tooth until the permanent crown is ready and the impression will be sent to a dental lab.

Second Visit
Approximately 2-3 weeks after the first appointment the patient will come back to have the permanent crown placed. The dentist will remove the temporary crown and make sure the fit of the crown is correct and will then secure the crown in place using permanent cement.

For the patients comfort a local anesthetic is used to numb the area around the tooth to avoid any discomfort during the procedure!