I’m often asked, “Dr. Groy, why is there a black line around this dental crown?” Fortunately, that black line does not indicate there is anything structurally wrong with the crown. However, such a line—especially if it is on a front tooth—can present an aesthetic problem. As a dentist in Leesburg, I can help you decide how to get rid of a black line while still maintaining a healthy tooth.
Why Is There a Black Line Around My Crown?
The most common reason is the material used to make the dental crown. A porcelain fused to metal restoration, or PFM, has dental porcelain overlaying a metal base. The porcelain matches the natural color and structure of the tooth, while the metal base provides strength and support. If the margin is exposed near the gum line, then a dark line appears.
Another possibility is gum recession. Receding gums can affect both PFM restorations as well as all-ceramic crowns that do not have any metal. Periodontal disease, aggressive brushing, teeth grinding or shifting teeth can all lead to gum recession. In this case, a black line may actually be part of the natural tooth structure if you had a root canal or traumatic injury before receiving the crown.
Finally, a black line around a crown may indicate that the tooth underneath has begun to decay. Although a crown does protect natural tooth structure, decay is still possible—especially at the margin. Of course, this is less likely to occur if you maintain excellent oral hygiene at home and schedule regular dental checkups.
How Can I Get Rid of the Black Line Around My Dental Crown?
The best way to eliminate that unattractive dark line is to replace the crown. In most cases, we can use a dental crown that is entirely made of porcelain, which looks completely natural. Today’s dental porcelain is also very strong, so you will not be sacrificing any strength with a crown that is free of metal.
With an all-ceramic or porcelain crown, there is no chance of metal leading to a dark line showing along your gums. Many of my patients feel that they look noticeably younger and healthier with these crowns.
If you don’t like the way a dental crown makes your smile look, then please contact my office in Leesburg to schedule an appointment. I’ll be glad to speak with you about how to get rid of that black line and give you a new crown that complements your smile.
Meet the Doctor
Dr. David Groy is a Leesburg dentist. He and his team of dental hygienists take care of smiles of all ages with preventive dentistry, cosmetic treatments, and restorative care. Call today for an appointment.