At Smiles by Myles, Dr. Wayne Myles sees many patients who have heavily damaged, decayed, or missing teeth. Patients usually don’t know which type of restoration they need to treat their problem. That is where our team of well-educated and experienced dental care professionals steps in.
First, we will conduct a thorough dental exam of your teeth, gum tissue, and jaw joints. If we find severe damage, our specialists may recommend dental crowns, inlays, or onlays as an effective treatment plan. Our goal is to provide you with superior dental services that we tailor to your individual needs and your unique smile.
Dental crowns are a restoration that is placed on a damaged, stained, or missing tooth that address both cosmetic and restorative issues. They are extremely durable and are matched to patients natural teeth to ensure that they blend in with the rest of your smile. We also provide additional restorative dentistry treatments at our dental office in Reston, VA.
What Are Dental Crowns?
A dental crown or cap is a porcelain cap that completely covers the surface of a tooth. Generally, patients who would most benefit from dental crowns are those who have worn down, structurally weak or fully decayed teeth.
The process is simple. First, our Reston dentist will remove any decay and damage in the tooth. Then he will craft a custom and permanent crown. The crown will be made to match the exact color, shape, and size of your natural teeth to blend in seamlessly with the rest of your smile. Next, he will bond it in place and polish it until smooth. Dental crowns in Reston, Virginia yield the best looks. Also, they greatly benefit your oral health by preserving as much of the original tooth as possible.
On average, it takes a dental crown about two to three days to settle in. It is perfectly normal for you to take time to adjust to your new crown. Patients may also feel sensitivity to hot and cold while adjusting to their new crown. An OTC pain reliever may alleviate discomfort. As time progresses, you will begin to feel comfortable chewing and speaking with your crown.
If you have an infected tooth or inflamed gums, we may recommend a root canal before placing a dental crown. Dental crowns do not always require root canals, however if you have a root canal we highly recommend that it be capped with a crown.
The process for placing a dental crown is not painful. Your dentist will use an anesthetic during the procedure to ensure that you don’t feel any pain and are kept anxiety free. After the dentist places the crown, the area may feel slightly uncomfortable for a few days. This is entirely normal and is part of the process of adjusting to the dental crown.
On average dental crowns last about 15 years. With good oral care and a healthy diet, you may see your crown last up to 25-30 years. To ensure that your dental crown lasts, it is also important to schedule regular dental cleanings in our office. These will also give us the opportunity to professionally clean and examine the health of your crown.
When used to replace missing teeth, dental implants may be used to support dental crowns. Unlike traditional crowns, implant-supported crowns replace the tooth at its root, providing an extremely stable foundation and removing the risk of jaw bone deterioration. The process for placing implant-supported crowns is slightly more in depth, however using dental implants to secure a crown comes with multiple benefits.
The process begins by surgically placing the implant. After the implant is placed, it heals and fuses with the jawbone during a process called osseointegration. This typically takes anywhere from 3 to 6 months. Next, an abutment is attached to the implant and a crown is custom-made to match the patients natural teeth. Finally, the crown is secured to the abutment and patients leave our office with a newly functioning smile. To learn more about the dental implant process, see Dental Implants.
The Many Uses of Dental Crowns
Dental crowns are ideal because they can treat a variety of dental concerns. When you have discolored teeth, professional teeth whitening is usually the standard treatment. But some discoloration doesn’t respond to traditional techniques. A dental crown covers the entire tooth when it’s placed. We color-match the crown to the shade of white that you desire so that it blends with the rest of your teeth.
Crowns treat both the cosmetic and restorative concerns of misshapen and broken teeth. Depending on where it’s located in your mouth, a defective tooth can cause problems with eating or speaking. Broken teeth often expose the sensitive nerves that are deeper inside your teeth, making these painful as well. We model crowns off the size and shape of the rest of your teeth. The tooth will look and function normally so that the defect is hidden and doesn’t impact your day-to-day life.
When you get a root canal, the interior infected portion of your tooth is removed. While it’s filled with a biocompatible material and sealed off from further infection, you may not get back the full capability of your tooth. Dental crowns are used to completely stabilize the tooth and ensure full functionality. Dental crowns also fortify anchor teeth that support a dental bridge. They take on the stress of the bridge so that the natural teeth don’t have to.
Lastly, crowns are the top choice to complete a dental implant restoration. They both look and feel the most like your natural teeth when they’re completed with a crown. The crown is modeled to blend in with your smile and function as a natural tooth would.
Dental Onlays & Inlays
Onlays conserve natural tooth structure and usually require minimal removal of a tooth’s surface. This helps you avoid the future need for more extensive dental treatments, such as bridges and dental implants. Because onlays are an indirect dental repair, the dentist installs them over the course of a few visits.
Dr. Myles fits his patients for customized onlays by first taking an impression of the treatment area. He will place a temporary onlay on the surface of your tooth to prevent any further damage. Then, he will send the impression to an American-based dental laboratory. There, they will use strong, safe, and mercury-free materials to construct your crown to exact specifications.
Within just a few days, the lab will deliver the tooth-colored porcelain crown to our office. Once you return to us, Dr. Myles will remove the temporary onlay. Then he will bond the natural-looking restoration to your tooth using high-strength dental resins.
A dental inlay conceals minor structural damage that exists within the cusps of a tooth. Dr. Myles only uses tooth-colored compounds to fabricate all of his dental restorations. Many patients who come to see us are looking to replace their old or damaged metal fillings. Dr. Myles can carefully remove the old fillings and replace them with natural-looking metal-free inlays. Inlays are similar to onlays and crowns. We can create and install them painlessly over the course of two visits.
Dental Crown FAQs
Do you have further questions about dental crowns and how they can cosmetically repair your smile? Continue reading to learn more about dental crowns and find answers to frequently asked questions in our office.
Is the process for placing dental crowns painful?
The process of getting a dental crown is no more painful than getting a tooth filling. It will involve some preparation where Dr. Myles will need to remove a portion of the tooth. This is done using specialized tools and by a professional. We will administer a local anesthetic around the tooth so you will not feel any pain.
You may still experience some pressure and minor discomfort, although most people tolerate it well. Sensitivity after a crown is placed is common after a crown is placed, however it should go away within a few days. OTC pain medication may be used to alleviate discomfort.
Why do I need a dental crown after a root canal treatment?
The tooth is weak and defenseless after root canal therapy. To protect it, we always recommend placing a dental crown over the tooth. This will protect the tooth from further damage and strengthen it.
Placing a dental crown over a root canal also restores it aesthetically and brings function back to that area of your mouth. Dental crowns are extremely durable and are color matched to the exact shade of your natural teeth to blend in naturally with your smile.
How long will my dental crown last?
The lifespan of a dental crown varies from person to person, depending on the placement of the crown, the patients diet, and how well you care for your teeth. Dental crowns are very durable and can last a lifetime if treated properly.
If you are careful about taking good care of your natural teeth, a dental crown can last anywhere from 15 to 20 years. Proper oral hygiene is brushing your teeth many times a day, flossing at least once a day, and visiting the dentist for a routine checkup every six months.
Can dentists use dental crowns for cosmetic reasons?
Yes, your dentist can provide a dental crown as a cosmetic dentistry treatment. Dr. Myles may recommend a dental crown to disguise a misshapen tooth or a stained tooth. Sometimes a damaged tooth is beyond repair, and a dental bonding treatment may not be successful. If a tooth does not respond to a whitening treatment, the only way to whiten it is with a dental crown.
Dental crowns can be used for a variety of cosmetic concerns, however while correcting cosmetic issues they are also able to restore function to patients smiles. Contact our office to find out if crowns can be used to address your cosmetic concerns today.
If you want to restore your mouth with a dental crown in Reston, Oakton, Vienna, or anywhere in Northern Virginia, contact our dental office today. Schedule an appointment online. Our team of oral health specialists looks forward to treating your beautiful smile for years to come!