Do I Need a Stainless Steel or Tooth-Colored Crown?

What type of kids dental crown should you choose

Are you a kid who needs a crown?

You have so much information at your fingertips, it’s easy to do a little of your own research about anything, including dental crowns. Perhaps your parents or dentist have said you might need a kids dental crown. If so, chances are you have questions. Here are a few answers for you!

If a tooth gets chipped or broken or a cavity damages your tooth beyond what a filling can repair, your dentist may recommend a crown. This will keep the tooth safe from more damage and make sure that it doesn’t hurt or cause problems when you eat and talk. There are different types of crowns, and you and your parents will discuss with your dentist which kind is right for your tooth. Let’s explore these different crowns a little more so you’ll know what to expect.

What is a dental crown? 

A dental crown is a special restoration your dentist places over a damaged tooth. When your tooth has a crack or a large cavity, a crown is often how a dentist fixes the tooth so that you can chew food and talk like normal. Even better, you won’t have to have a tooth pulled just because part of it broke off or chipped. 

All crowns fit over broken teeth and protect them from harm, but they can be made from several different materials. Some crowns are shaped and colored to look like a natural tooth; these tooth-colored crowns are often made of zirconia, acrylic, or composite for baby teeth, as well as porcelain, zirconia, or ceramic for permanent teeth. There are also stainless steel crowns. They aren’t tooth colored, but they are very strong, meaning you won’t have to worry about them breaking. 

Tooth-Colored Crowns 

A tooth-colored crown is made to look just like a regular tooth. This type of crown is a popular choice because people won’t even know you have a crown. 

The materials used to make these crowns are strong and come in many shades to match your real teeth. So when your dentist cements your crown in place, its shape and shade match the teeth around it. This type of crown is great for front teeth so that when you smile or eat food, no one sees a crown—they just see a normal tooth. 

Tooth-colored crowns are easy to brush and floss to keep clean, too, just like your other teeth, so you won’t have to worry about doing anything special to keep them looking great. 

Stainless Steel Crowns 

Stainless steel is a very strong metal that is sometimes used to make crowns. Stainless steel crowns are very hard, making them unlikely to break. They also won’t rust or have other problems because of how durable they are. They’re often used for children who have issues with a back baby tooth, also known as a molar. 

Stainless steel crowns are usually put on the back teeth instead of the front teeth. This is because a lot of our chewing is done with our back teeth, and a stainless steel crown is very durable. It’s also harder to notice a crown on a back tooth, so you won’t have to worry about it standing out when you smile.  

What does getting a crown feel like? 

Getting a crown put on is pretty simple. Baby tooth crowns usually only take one visit, while crowns on permanent teeth are often made at a dental lab. So it may take two visits to the dentist to get the whole thing done, but you won’t have to worry about anything while the process happens. 

First, the dentist will numb your tooth so that you won’t feel anything while they get the tooth ready for the crown. Your dentist will clean the tooth up, remove any decay and debris, and shape your tooth for the crown to fit. If you’re getting a crown on a permanent tooth, you will get a temporary crown while you wait for your new one to be made at the dental laboratory.

During your second visit, the dentist will install the crown on the tooth and set it in place using special dental glue. Once that’s done, you’re ready to go!

At first it might feel a little different when you try to chew or talk with the crown on your tooth, but after a little while, you’ll get used to it, and eating and talking will feel normal. In fact, you’ll probably forget you have a crown in the first place. 

Why is getting a crown a good idea? 

There are many reasons that getting a crown is the best idea for a broken or badly decayed tooth. 

First, it helps protect your tooth so that it doesn’t get damaged any further and have to be pulled. It will also look really good compared to having just a broken tooth. With a tooth-colored crown, you’ll hardly be able to tell the difference between it and a normal tooth. Plus your crown will last a long time. Lastly, you’ll be able to eat and talk like normal again, which would be very hard with a broken tooth. 

For more information, be sure to ask your pediatric dental team.

Both kinds of crowns are great. It really just depends on which tooth needs the crown as to which option is best for you. Either way, the process is simple, and you won’t feel a thing! And as always, if you or your parents have any other questions about stainless steel or tooth-colored crowns, you can always ask your pediatric dentist at your next appointment. Your dental team will be happy to help!