How to Get the Most From Your Dental Crowns

Dental crowns are one of the most commonly used restorative and cosmetic dental treatments. They can improve the aesthetic appearance of a smile, address dental injuries, and save natural teeth from extraction. Our Dentist in Fairhope, AL is proud to provide patients with exceptional restorative dentistry, including digitally designed and manufactured dental crowns.  

What Is a Dental Crown?

A dental crown (also called a dental cap) is a prosthetic dental restoration. Hollow and tooth-shaped, a dental crown is designed to cover and seal a patient's natural tooth.  

Dental crowns are most commonly made of porcelain or porcelain fused to metal, depending on the location and type of tooth being treated.  

How Do Dental Crowns Work?

Permanently affixed to natural teeth, dental crowns are used to strengthen, protect, and preserve severely compromised teeth by completely covering and sealing the portion of a natural tooth that is located above the gum line.  

Dental crowns are most commonly needed for severe cavity repair after a patient has undergone root canal therapy. They are also often the recommended treatment when a patient's tooth has been compromised as a result of a faulty dental filling or an injury that results in a significantly chipped or fractured tooth.  

Dental crowns can also be used for cosmetic purposes to improve the appearance of a tooth that might be permanently discolored or have an irregular size or shape.  

How Long Will My Dental Crown Last?

Dental crowns are made of highly durable materials such as porcelain and metal alloys. As a result, they can withstand the intense chewing pressures inflicted on the surfaces of the teeth. The average lifespan of a dental crown can vary significantly depending on how well it is cared for. Depending on the care received, dental crowns can last anywhere from five to 15 years.  

How to Care for Your Dental Crown

Dental crowns can typically be cared for in the same way that you take care of your natural teeth - with regular brushing and flossing.  

To ensure you get the most life out of your dental crown, we recommend taking some special considerations and oral care steps to protect your crown from damage while maintaining the health of your teeth and gums.  

  • Use a water flosser to clean the gums and area around your dental crown.  
  • Rinse regularly with an alcohol-free, antibacterial mouthwash.
  • Do not chew on ice or other hard objects.  
  • Wear an athletic mouthguard during athletic activities that put your mouth at risk of impact or injury due to falling, biting down, or being hit with a ball or stick.  
  • Wear a nightguard if you suffer from sleep bruxism (clenching the jaw or grinding your teeth during sleep).
  • Avoid highly pigmented foods and beverages (tea, coffee, dark-colored sodas, red wine, chocolate, and berries) or be sure to rinse your mouth with water after consuming these foods or drinks.  
  • Do not use any kind of tobacco products.  

Following these dental crown care recommendations will help protect your dental crown from excessive wear and tear, breakage, and staining. By taking steps to care for and protect your crown, you can extend its lifespan.  

Repair Your Dental Crown With Our Emergency Dentist in Fairhope, AL

Dental crowns can be broken or stained. Since they are fixed to a natural tooth with dental cement, they can also sometimes come loose or completely fall off of a tooth if the dental cement wears out.  

If you experience problems with your dental crown, such as a broken, loose, or lost crown, this should be considered a dental emergency. For patients with dental crowns, the crown protects the delicate, compromised natural tooth from infection and breakage. If your crown feels loose or falls off, we strongly encourage you to contact our office as soon as possible to request an emergency appointment.  

During an emergency appointment, we can either repair your existing, intact dental crown or provide you with a replacement restoration to ensure your natural tooth is adequately protected.  

If your dental crown becomes stained or discolored, this is not an emergency. However, we understand the importance of having a smile you are proud to show off and can work with you to restore the appearance of your smile. Typically, over-the-counter and even professional tooth whitening treatments do not work on dental restorations. If routine polishing does not remove the stain, then we can talk with you about replacing your discolored crown with a new restoration.  

Precision Dental Crowns  

At Lagniappe Dental, we use advanced digital technology to deliver extraordinary treatment results with precision dental restorations. Whether you're undergoing root canal therapy, have suffered an injury, or have discovered issues that have developed due to an old, compromised dental filling, our dentist can help you preserve your natural teeth and restore the form, function, and health of your smile.  

To learn more about caring for your dental crowns or to request an appointment with Dr. Bruce, we welcome you to contact Lagniappe Dental today.


Call 251-517-3313 or request an appointment online to set up your first visit. We’ll be in touch soon.