How to Know if You Need a Dental Crown

By: Dr. Carolyn B. Walker


Dental crowns are extremely popular both in cosmetic and restorative dentistry, helping patients to achieve, restore, or repair a more beautiful and functional smile. At Leon Springs Dental Center in San Antonio, TX, distinguished dentist Dr. Carolyn B. Walker offers a full range of dental restoration options, including dental crowns, to help patients just like you feel more confident about their teeth once again. Wondering if you may be a good candidate for dental crowns – or whether a different treatment may be more suitable? Use the information below to better understand when dental crowns are appropriate and what results may be possible for you.

What is a dental crown?

The term "dental crown" refers to the tooth-like restoration that is used to replace a missing tooth or cover a damaged or otherwise compromised tooth. Sometimes called a “cap,” a dental crown used to cover a tooth fits snugly over the entire tooth, including the front, back, and chewing surface. When a crown is used to replace a tooth that is missing, it is attached to a titanium screw – known as a dental implant – that is surgically placed into the patient’s jawbone.

When is a crown necessary in dentistry?

Dental crowns offer patients the opportunity to replace a missing tooth or conceal a tooth that is compromised either structurally or cosmetically. Whenever possible, Dr. Walker attempts to save the patient’s natural tooth through advanced treatments and technologies. When the tooth has already been knocked out or removed, or when it has become damaged or decayed beyond repair, a dental crown may be necessary. Additionally, crowns may be used for cosmetic purposes. Some of the primary reasons why patients may desire or require dental crowns include:

  • Tooth was extracted
  • Missing tooth or teeth
  • Tooth knocked out due to trauma
  • Tooth never grew in
  • Weakened tooth
  • Worn-down teeth
  • Tooth decay or damage
  • Tooth required root canal treatment
  • Enamel erosion
  • Yellow or discolored teeth
  • Stained teeth
  • Uneven smile
  • Small teeth

How are dental crowns placed?

The process of placing dental crowns can vary from person to person based on individual case factors, like whether the crown is being used to replace a tooth or to “cap” the teeth. In all cases, creating dental crowns involves taking impressions of the teeth and mouth. This allows the crowns to be custom-tailored to fit the patient and to achieve his or her desired tooth shape, size, length, and color.

How long do dental crowns last?

High-quality crowns can last for 10 –20 years or longer with proper care and hygiene. To extend the life of your dental crowns and keep them looking their best, use the following tips:

  • Brush, floss, and rinse daily
  • Avoid staining foods and drinks, like red wine
  • Brush or rinse after coffee, tea, red wine, etc.
  • Avoid hard, crunchy, and sticky foods
  • Avoid sugary foods

Your dream smile can become a reality with dental crowns in San Antonio, TX

If you are missing a tooth or have damaged, worn teeth that make you feel self-conscious about your smile, you are not alone. With dental implants, you can join the many men and women who are enjoying a beautiful, healthy, strong smile once again. For more information on your options for dental restorations, call Leon Springs Dental Center to schedule your consultation and exam with top San Antonio, TX dentist Dr. Carolyn D. Walker today.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.