Patients’ Top 5 Questions About Dental Crowns


When we recommend a dental crown, many patients have questions. If you’ve never needed any restorations beyond a simple filling, you are probably curious about this treatment. How do crowns work? Why are they needed? To help you understand your recommended treatment, we’ve put together a few frequently asked questions about this restorative dentistry technique.

How Are Crowns Different from Fillings?

Fillings are used to restore a portion of tooth enamel that has been damaged by decay. They fill up the hole (cavity) that has been made by bacterial acids, with a hard enamel substitute called dental composite. Dental crowns are different because they are tooth shaped caps that fully encircle and protect a tooth. A crown is made to look like a full natural tooth and should fit perfectly into your smile. Unlike a filling, crowns are made in a dental laboratory and sent back to the dentist to be bonded to your tooth. This means that it may take several weeks to get your crown, unlike a filling, which is completed in one visit.

Why Might I Need a Dental Crown?

If you’ve been told you need a crown, this means your tooth has sustained a great deal of structural damage or is likely to fail in the future. Teeth may need crowns if (1) they have sustained a deep crack, (2) a portion of the tooth has broken off, or (3) much of the tooth’s structure has been lost to decay. Some patients choose to have crowns made for cosmetic reasons. For example, if a tooth is badly stained and does not respond to whitening treatments, a crown can provide a beautiful substitute in your smile.

What Are Dental Crowns Made Of? Do They Look Natural?

Crowns are made to look like your affected tooth and should look natural in your smile. Crowns can be made of either metal, porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM), dental ceramic, or zirconia. If you have lost a tooth that shows when you smile, you may wish to choose a zirconia or ceramic crown, as they tend to look more like natural teeth. PFM crowns are more discreet than all-metal crowns, but they may reveal a thin line of metal at the gum line as time passes.

How Long Do Crowns Last?

Dental crowns are made to mimic the function, shape, and hardness of tooth enamel. With proper bonding they can last for many years. The average life span for dental crowns is about 10-15 years. Zirconia and metal crowns tend to last a bit longer than ceramic. However, we’ve seen crowns last a lifetime, in some cases. The good news is that careful use can extend the life of your crown. Do not use your crown to bite hard, non-food items, and it will last longer!

It’s important for you to know that after you have had a crown treatment, you will not be able to go back to not having a crown. Since much of the tooth enamel must be removed to make room for the crown, the tooth will no longer be protected from bacterial damage and temperature sensitivity. If your crown ever becomes dislodged, you should see a dentist as soon as possible to have it rebonded.

What Will Happen During My Appointment?

During your appointment, we will start with an anesthetic injection to make sure you feel no sensitivity in the tooth. After you are numb, we will treat the tooth by removing a portion of the enamel. We end up with a smaller tooth that leaves room for the crown to fit snugly over and around it.

Next, we will take a dental impression of your bite. This will serve as a guide for the dental technicians who design and fabricate your crown in an off-site laboratory. Before you leave, we will fit you with a temporary crown to wear while your permanent crown is being made. This temporary crown will protect the tooth and help you chew your food properly. It is not meant to be worn forever, however, and is not as strong as your final dental crown will be. Take care not to eat very sticky or chewy foods when wearing the temporary, as they may dislodge it. When your crown is ready, we will call you in for a second appointment to have it permanently bonded to your tooth.

Contact Celebrity Dental Care of Franklin Square, NY to learn more about dental crowns. Visit our dental office or call us at (516) 481-1446 to make an appointment.

02:36 18 Dec 17
Dr Novick and the Celebrity Dental Team Is Awesome! Hands down the best dentist our family has ever gone to! His staff is awesome and there is never a wait when you visit! Dr Novick is also awesome with my 2 kids (7 and 12) and even got them to brush twice a day! Over 10 years strong and my teeth have never been better! - Thanks Guys!!!
renee Nero
renee Nero
01:50 18 Jan 18
I always hated going to the dentist and would skip years at a time but once I started going to Dr Novick that hatred faded off. It may sound corny but Dr Novick gave me my smile. I trust his opinion and take his advice on what he recommendeds for my oral health. His staff is wonderful. Everyone is friendly and makes you feel comfortable.
Lenore Weingarten
Lenore Weingarten
00:06 01 Feb 18
The staff in this office is AMAZING. Dr. Novick is a fantastic dentist. I have and will continue to recommend him to anyone who needs a dentist.
Sheryl Kushnick-Carr
Sheryl Kushnick-Carr
02:51 10 Feb 18
Dr. Novick and his Staff are fantastic!! I've been going there for over 12 years, and now bring my elderly parents to Celebrity Dental as well. Dr. Novick is beyond gentle, explains everything, doesn't double book.... Can't recommend them enough!!!
03:46 23 Dec 17
Dr. Novick goes the extra mile to ensure I have the best possible outcome. Because of this my teeth are in great shape. His hygienist who did my teeth cleaning has the same great attitude.
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If you are ready to give your smile the star treatment in Franklin Square, Celebrity Dental is the place for you. To schedule your visit, just give us a call at