Crowns are placed over a tooth when a large portion of the tooth is lost, decayed or has broken off and there is a risk for further fracture or undue stress. Usually, when a filling is more than half of the size of the tooth, the tooth is weakened. If the filling would comprise a significant portion of the tooth, often the tooth can fracture under the stresses of chewing and therefore, placing a crown over the tooth protects the chewing surface and prevents that from happening.
A tooth-colored dental crown may be made of both porcelain and metal, or, thanks to newly available technology, it may be made entirely of porcelain. Recent breakthroughs in adhesives, combined with the development of stronger porcelain materials, allow us to make dental crowns entirely out of porcelain. In the past, porcelain crowns were always built upon a metal core. That was the only way they could have enough strength to withstand the tremendous biting forces that are exerted on all of your teeth. That metal core is what creates the dark blue line at the edge of many crowns. All-porcelain crowns maintain a translucency that makes them hard to differentiate from natural teeth. Without metal, the problem of a dark line at the edge of the gums is eliminated. This allows us to place the edge of the porcelain crown above the gumline, and that’s healthier for your tooth and gums. When you want to improve your smile, porcelain crowns are a beautiful and natural looking choice.