A dental crown serves as a replacement for a tooth that is badly decayed, cracked or broken. It can also be used following a root canal procedure to provide strength and stability to the treated tooth. Crowns are additionally used during dental implant procedures to serve as a replacement tooth structure that is permanently secured in the mouth by attaching it to the titanium post or posts that are implanted into the jaw bone.
No matter why you may have a dental crown placed in your mouth, the good news is that care for your new replacement tooth is virtually the same as it would be if your original, natural tooth were still in place. Of course, this doesn’t mean you can neglect the tooth altogether simply because it doesn’t require any special care. Rather, you should treat the tooth as if it were any other tooth, while taking just a few precautions to better ensure that the crown stays in place for a long time.
For starters, you’ll want to stick to a regular oral hygiene routine. This means you should brush your teeth well at least twice per day – in the morning and before bed time – using a soft bristled toothbrush, toothpaste and water. You should also floss daily, with no special restrictions required when flossing near the crown. Just floss as you would between any other teeth. By brushing and flossing regularly, you’ll keep all of your teeth and gums, including your new replacement tooth, free from bacteria and debris that can eventually result in tooth decay or gum problems.
You should also visit your dentist regularly for a professional cleaning as well as a dental screening. Most dentists recommend that you visit the office two times per year, although it may be recommended that you come more often if you have any signs of gum disease or excessive tooth decay. The intervals between dental visits should not change depending on whether or not you have a crown, however.
Perhaps one of the only differences in caring for a dental crown as compared to a natural tooth is related to what you eat. While you basically have no restrictions on eating or drinking with your new crown, since it functions just like your regular teeth, it is wise to avoid very sticky foods that may attach to the crown and serve to loosen it or even pull it out. Otherwise, you can generally eat or drink anything you like, within reason.
Keep in mind that you have paid good money for your new replacement tooth, so don’t bite on anything that you think might damage even your real teeth. This includes hard non-food objects (that shouldn’t be bitten on anyway!), as well as some foods that are extremely hard and may cause damage even to healthy teeth.
With proper care, your dental crown should provide years of natural-looking tooth replacement, providing you with the look and functionality of your own teeth.
For more information about caring for dental crowns, contact Gentle Dental in Queens at 718-461-0100.