Dental crowns are tooth-shaped caps custom created to fit your natural tooth restoring its strength, appearance, and size. Dental crowns are beneficial if you suffer from extensive tooth damage due to decay and trauma because the tooth restoration procedure fortifies your tooth. The dental crown placement will happen over your damaged tooth providing it the much-needed strength.
The dental crown procedure becomes necessary in various dental situations with the sole aim of protecting your weakened tooth. In addition, the restoration enhances the appearance of a chipped or broken tooth, makes cosmetic alterations, covers a dental implant, and even helps hold dental bridges in place.
Permanent dental crowns last for over a decade. However, with proper oral hygiene, dental crowns can serve for as long as 25 years. Fortunately, dental crowns don’t require any special attention besides observing acceptable dental hygiene practices brushing and flossing, and caring for the crowned tooth.
When leaving your dentist’s office after your initial appointment, your dentist places a temporary crown over the prepared tooth. The temporary restoration projects the prepared tooth preventing bacteria from infecting it and preventing sensitivity. You must revisit the dentist for placement of your permanent crown after it is custom created for you by the dental lab.
Leaving your dentist’s office after dental crown placement can make you feel your restored tooth has acquired the strength necessary to begin having all foods you prefer. However, while you will have fewer restrictions with permanent crowns, you must avoid certain foods to protect your dental restoration.
You must avoid crunchy foods like seeds, nuts, and pretzels because these foods can chip or break your dental crown. Likewise, sticky foods like steak and candies are better avoided because they can dislodge your restoration. Therefore you must be cautious of your repair when selecting snacks.
Biting down on popcorn and nuts or uncooked popcorn kernels is harmful for the restoration. If you like chewing on ice, you must quit the habit to preserve your dental crown. You will do well to have cooked vegetables avoiding raw vegetables because they are softer and are not harmful for the restoration.
Besides the foods mentioned above, you may have to wait for the anesthesia to wear off before you have soft foods after getting a tooth crown. This is because the tooth receiving the crown and the gums beneath remain tender, and the anesthesia you received during crown placement can make you bite your cheeks or lips if you try to eat anything too early after dental crown placement. Therefore you must wait until your mouth feels normal again before you begin eating anything. The time you may need is anything between 45 minutes to a couple of hours.
Biting into apples with crowns shouldn’t be a challenge, especially if your dentist has done an excellent job with the restoration. Crowns restore the functionality of your tooth to allow you to join foods you prefer. However, it is safer to cut the fruit or bite the fruit from one side using the natural tooth instead of the crowned tooth.
Besides avoiding the foods mentioned above, there are some behaviors you must avoid when you have your tooth restored with dental crowns.
Do not assume you can use your teeth as tools for opening packages, biting fingernails, or opening corn corks. Your teeth are designed to help you eat and chew and not for any other purpose. Using your teeth for such purposes can damage them and your tooth crowns.
Dental restorations like tooth crowns don’t need special attention but require proper dental hygiene, brushing twice a day, flossing at least once to make them last longer. In addition, you must prevent plaque buildup, a leading cause of gum disease, from developing around the crowned tooth. Scheduling six-monthly visits to your dentist for cleanings and exams are also essential whether you have dental crowns over your teeth or not.
Following the suggestions mentioned in this article, you can protect your dental restorations and get the best out of your investment. Although dental crowns are durable, they are susceptible to breakage and damage. Your dentist provides after-care instructions after restoring your tooth. Following them diligently will make it easier for you to care for the dental crown.