You’ve just received a beautiful new porcelain crown. It matches your other teeth perfectly, and your smile is flawless. Now, you need to protect your investment (and your smile) with proper care and maintenance. Here, our Denver team at Metropolitan Dental Care explores the life expectancy of a porcelain crown and explains how to best maintain your new restoration.
Think you may need a crown? Schedule a consultation at our Denver or Lone Tree practice. Call us today at 303-534-2626.
How long will my dental crown last?
On average, dental crowns are designed to last between five and 15 years. However, with today’s advanced materials, crowns are lasting even longer – often upwards of 20 years. While there is no way to know exactly how long your porcelain crown will last, you can reduce the risk of damage by practicing good oral hygiene, protecting your smile from bruxism, and avoiding harmful habits (like biting your fingernails).
Doesn’t my crown protect me from further decay?
Porcelain is impervious to decay. However, some patients assume that a porcelain crown will protect a tooth from any further damage. While the crown itself will not decay, the natural tooth structure underneath still can. Therefore, it’s extremely important to visit the dentist regularly and brush and floss daily between appointments.
Caring for Your Temporary Crown
In many cases, patients will wear a temporary crown while they wait for their final restoration to be fabricated. Temporary restorations are commonly made of resin or plastic. They are not intended for long-term use. As a result, they require more delicate care.
Here are some pointers for taking care of your temporary crown:
- Try chewing on the other side of your mouth as much as possible.
- Steer clear of chewy, sticky foods, such as taffy, caramel, and chewing gum. These can dislodge the crown.
- Avoid hard foods like nuts and raw vegetables, which can damage the crown.
- When flossing your teeth, pull the floss through instead of lifting it out. Lifting it out can cause the crown to become dislodged.
- To help soothe the soft tissues around the crown, keep the area clean and soak it with warm salt water a couple of times every day.
If your temporary crown breaks or becomes dislodged, call our office right away for further instructions. We will schedule a time to have it replaced.
Maintaining Your Final Porcelain Crown
Once your porcelain crown is in place, some of the same rules apply. For instance, avoid hard or chewy foods for the first 24 hours. This allows the cement to set up properly. Here are some other recommendations that will help your crown last:
- Use a soft toothbrush. Medium or hard brushes can damage the porcelain.
- Choose non-abrasive toothpaste. Harsh products like baking soda and hydrogen peroxide can scratch the porcelain crown over time.
- Don’t use your teeth as tools. Avoid biting your nails or opening packages with your teeth. These behaviors can seriously damage your crowns – not to mention your natural teeth.
- Brush twice a day and floss once daily.
- Use an alcohol-free antibacterial mouthwash.
- Visit your dentist regularly.
Learn More about Porcelain Crowns at Our Denver Practice
When cared for properly, porcelain crowns can protect and strengthen damaged teeth for many years. To learn more about the services we offer, schedule a consultation at our Denver or Lone Tree office. Call Metropolitan Dental Care at 303-534-2626 or contact us online anytime.