Dental crowns are a popular way to repair broken or worn-down teeth that cannot be restored with a filling alone, according to MedicineNet. They can also protect weakened teeth or be used to attach a dental bridge. Crowns are also used to cap dental implants. They are normally reliable, but problems do occasionally arise with dental crowns. If you watch out for them, you can contact your dentist immediately to resolve any problems that might crop up.
Dental crowns may cause sensitivity or pain. This is most common when the crown is new because the tooth's nerve is reacting to heat and cold. MedicineNet says that brushing with toothpaste made especially for sensitive teeth can help with this problem. If the pain happens when a person bites down, his crown is most likely placed too high on the tooth. This can be easily fixed by a dentist.
Dental crowns made from porcelain can chip as the crown gets older or if a person bites into something hard. MedicineNet says that small chips can be fixed by a dentist using composite resin. If the crown has excessive chipping, repair may not be possible. In this case, the dentist can usually place a new crown.
Crowns can get loose if the bonding cement washes out from underneath the crown. This lets bacteria invade the area, which may cause decay in the underlying tooth. If your crown feels loose, you should see your dentist immediately to see if it can be recemented. If a loose crown is ignored, it may come off completely. You should contact your dentist immediately, as she will need to recement it or possibly replace it. In the meantime, MedicineNet says you can temporarily reattach it yourself using dental cement sold in pharmacies.
Although it is rare, MedicineNet says that some people can have an allergic reaction to a dental crown. Crowns typically contain a mixture of metals. This can cause a reaction in people with metal allergies.
World Dental magazine says that many problems with dental crowns can be prevented. People with allergies to metal should talk to their dentist before a crown is installed. Once it is in place, be careful with overly hard or sticky foods such as raw vegetables or taffy and caramel. Try to chew potentially problematic foods in another area of your mouth rather than with the crowned tooth. Brush and floss at least once a day, and do it after every meal and snack for the best results.