What to Consider When Getting a Tooth Cap

Posted on: February 15, 2018

Tooth CapGetting a tooth cap is not a major dental procedure.  Tooth caps, also known as crowns, enhance your smile, bite and confidence.  Tooth caps are a popular dental restoration as they last long, are not difficult to fit and typically covered by dental insurance.  If you have a chipped, broken, discolored or decayed tooth, talk with your dentist about the merits of getting a tooth cap.

Dental crowns

Dental Cap Material

If you are thinking about getting a tooth cap, you should know what this oral health solution contains. The type of cap in a patient's mouth hinges on the position of the tooth in question.  If the tooth is front-facing and visible when the patient smiles, then the dentist will likely recommend a porcelain crown. People cannot distinguish this type of crown from the rest of the teeth.

If we are going to position the dental cap in the back of the mouth where no one will see it, the dentist will likely recommend a gold crown. The gold variety is quite durable. In some cases, a hybrid compound makes sense.  As an example, the fusing of porcelain to metal will suffice for the back teeth.

The Process of Getting a Tooth Cap

Once the initial screening occurs, we may recommend X-rays to gauge the extent of the damage.  If the tooth is in good condition, we will shape the cap according to the tooth's contours. We will then cement the cap into position.  If the tooth is broken or significantly decayed, it might be necessary to use a foundation for the cap along with a dental post. Feel free to discuss the different types of tooth caps with the dentist at this time.

The next visit involves a numbing of the tooth and the nearby gum.  The dentist then files down the tooth in question to create space for the crown.  After replacing the tooth, we will apply putty to the area to create an impression. We return the impression to the dental laboratory so professionals can create the temporary crown with stainless steel or the specific material. We will then place it in the proper place once it is complete.

This portion of the tooth cap process usually takes around an hour to complete.  The temporary crown might be made of acrylic as opposed to stainless steel.  This crown is engineered to endure everyday chewing for upwards of a couple weeks.  However, it is not prudent to eat sticky or hard food when your temporary crown is in place.

Placement of the Permanent Tooth Cap

Once your permanent tooth cap is ready, the dentist will apply a local anesthetic, remove the temporary tooth cap and place the permanent tooth cap in place.  This permanent crown will be firmly positioned with dental cement.  The dentist will likely ask you to move your teeth, chew and bite down a couple times to ensure the fit is perfect.  If any refiling or adjustments are necessary, the dentist will be able to perform them in mere minutes.

What Happens After Getting a Tooth Cap

Once the local anesthetic wears off, your mouth might feel a bit tender or sore by the gum line.  The use of an over-the-counter pain reliever or an ice pack will help reduce the pain.  It won't take long for your bite to feel normal.  In terms of care, go ahead and clean your capped tooth just like your regular teeth.

Clean the cap with a soft-bristled brush.  Floss the tooth every single day.  With proper care, your cap should last for a decade or longer.

Call (480) 439-0073 to schedule an appointment with Impressions Dental in our Chandler dental office.