According to DentistyIQ.com, the average dental practice placed an average of 13 single dental crowns per month in 2016, making the procedure fairly common. But just because your dentist says you need a crown doesn’t mean you can’t—or shouldn’t—ask questions before deciding to go ahead with the procedure. I often see patients looking for a second opinion after they’ve been told that they need several crowns. As a Leesburg dentist, I’m happy to answer any questions you might have on the topic. In fact, here are some questions you should ask about dental crowns.
Why Exactly Do I Need a Crown?
If a tooth hurts when you bite down, then it may be seriously cracked. In this case, the best solution may truly be a dental crown. Teeth are not like bones in which fractures heal. A crack that goes no further than your gum line may only require a full-coverage crown. However, if the crack goes below the gum line, then a root canal may be necessary before a crown is placed.
Is a Root Canal Always Required Before a Dental Crown?
Not at all. Most of the time, in fact, patients do not need a root canal before a crown is placed. Only if there are signs and symptoms of infection inside the tooth is root canal therapy necessary.
Do I Have Other Options?
You might. A filling may work temporarily, but this will not prevent you from needing a crown at some time in the future. Keep in mind that a filling cannot provide the same level of protection as a crown. Also, if you need an especially large filling, there is a chance that it could cause the tooth to break.
Can I Just Wait?
Yes, but there are risks involved. For example, the tooth might chip near the crack or the crack could deepen. If the crack is already deep, then bacteria could migrate to the pulp chamber, necessitating a root canal. Also, the tooth could split. If this happens, then the only choice may be to extract the tooth.
Should I Replace a Large Silver Filling with a Crown?
That depends on what approach you’d like to take. Some patients like to be proactive and fix a potential problem before there is trouble. Others would rather be more conservative and not fix what isn’t broken. However, if a filling takes up more than two-thirds the width of a tooth, then you’re probably better off with a crown.
If you’ve been told that you need a dental crown and you’d like a second opinion, please call the office. I’ll be glad to evaluate your tooth and make a recommendation.
Meet the Doctor
Dr. David Groy has years of experience and extensive training. He and his team of dental hygienists take care of smiles of all ages with preventive dentistry, cosmetic treatments, and restorative care including dental crowns in Leesburg. Call today for an appointment.