Crowns are often needed to restore teeth that are damaged due to decay, fractures, large fillings, after root canal therapy, or to reshape teeth for cosmetic reasons. A crown is used when other more conservative methods cannot adequately restore the tooth or teeth. This procedure is performed in 2 appointments, the first of which is to shape the tooth and make an impression or mold of the tooth. A provisional or temporary crown is made at this time. The second appointment is to place the permanent crown after it has been fabricated in the dental laboratory. At this visit, the new crown will be permanently secured to the tooth using a strong cement.
Porcelain crowns that are natural looking and match the patient's teeth are the standard type of crown that will be used in most cases. Crowns can also be made out of gold or other metal alloys in specific situations.