If you are wearing a crown (and not the kind you wear on your head!) you know that your crown represents a significant investment in the form and function of your tooth. With proper care and maintenance it has the potential to last a lifetime. The materials a crown is made from will not be subject to tooth decay like your natural teeth. However you should not be cavalier about its care.
Food particles and bacteria in your mouth can develop into plaque. If plaque is not removed by twice daily brushing and flossing, it can harden into tartar. Tartar at the gum line can lead to gum disease and inflammation. Inflamed gum tissue can actually cause the gums to pull back from the tooth exposing pockets where bacteria can deeply infect the gums near the root of the tooth. Left unchecked, it can cause the loss of bone in the parts of the jaw that anchor the crown in place.
Bacteria from tartar at the gum line can also work into the microscopic gap that cements the crown to the abutment. This has the potential to cause the abutment teeth to suffer from decay and the crown to fall out.
A crown in your smile is usually made from a porcelain-ceramic material. When your crown was made it was matched to the color of your natural teeth. Things like tobacco use and frequently drinking dark beverages can cause deep staining in your remaining natural teeth. In time your natural teeth might not perfectly match the color and tone of the crown.
If you have questions about caring for your crown please feel free to call us at 757.222.3737 to schedule an appointment. We look forward to seeing you!