Did you know that when you get a dental crown, you don’t need to choose between a temporary crown vs a permanent dental crown?

When people hear the terms “temporary crown” and “permanent crown” they often think they have a choice to get one or the either. However, anytime you get a crown placed on a tooth, you’ll get a temporary crown first and then get your permanent crown a week or two later. 

If you want to better understand the crown process and the difference between temporary and permanent crowns, then this is the article for you.

In this article, we’ll break down everything you need to know about dental crowns and answer some of the most common questions, like:

  • Are dental crowns permanent?
  • What is a temporary crown?
  • What is a permanent crown?
  • What does a permanent crown look like?
  • How long do temporary crowns last?

Keep reading to learn all about dental crowns and the best place for crowns in Richmond, VA.

What Is a Dental Crown?

Let’s start with some basics: What is a dental crown? 

A dental crown (or cap) is placed over an already existing tooth that’s either damaged or decayed. Dentists typically use dental crowns:

Dental crowns can strengthen and restore a tooth after periodontal treatments like root planing. Dentists also commonly use crowns for implants or bridges to replace missing teeth.

Crowns can be made from a variety of materials, including:

  • Gold alloy
  • Zirconia
  • Porcelain fused to metal (PFM)

Gold alloy is the strongest, most durable crown material. It’s often used for crowns on molars. For front teeth, dentists can use Zirconia or PFM crowns since they can be matched to the color of your natural teeth.

So now that you know more about crowns in general, let’s look at the specific of a temporary crown vs. permanent crown.

What Is a Permanent Crown?

Permanent crowns are made to stay in your mouth for an extended period of time. They’re strongly bonded to your tooth, so you can’t remove them without potentially causing damage to your existing tooth.

Dentists often use permanent crowns to:

  • Strengthen weak teeth
  • Fix worn down teeth
  • Cover-up cracked teeth
  • Replace damaged crowns

Permanent crowns are also frequently used attach help anchor traditional bridges in place.

When properly maintained, permanent crowns can last up to 15 or more years before needing to be replaced (and they will eventually need to be replaced, regardless of how well you care for them).

What Does A Permanent Crown Look Like?

A permanent crown will look, feel, and function just like a regular tooth. Your dentist’s goal is to create a crown that’s virtually undetectable when it’s in place.

However, the exact appearance of your permanent crown will depend on the material used to create your crown.

  • A gold alloy crown will have a metallic appearance to it and can be quite visible. These types of crowns are often used on back teeth where they’re less noticeable.
  • Zirconia crowns, on the other hand, can be more closely matched to the color of your natural teeth. Dentists will often use these crowns on more visible front teeth.

Regardless of the material of your crown, your dentist will ensure that your permanent crown effectively restores our overall tooth and mouth function.

What Is a Temporary Crown?

Temporary crowns are also known as “disposable” or “provisional” crowns because they’re only intended to last a short amount of time. Temporary crowns use the same materials as permanent crowns, so you won’t notice much difference in color or appearance. 

Unlike permanent crowns, the dentist fabricates the temporary dental crown right in his or her office. It’s a convenient interim solution, and since a temporary crown isn’t fused to the tooth like a permanent crown, your dentist can easily remove it if necessary.

So when is a temporary crown used?

Dentists often place a temporary crown on a tooth during the interim period of having a procedure and waiting for the permanent crown to get back from a laboratory. Temporary crowns are often just a placeholder until the permanent crown is available.

How Long Do Temporary Crowns Last?

Temporary crowns usually last anywhere from 2 to 12 weeks. They help bridge the gap from your first visit to the dentist to the placement of your final permanent crown.

The life span of your temporary crown depends mostly on your oral hygiene habits. The better you care for your teeth and crown, the longer your temporary crown will last.

While wearing your temporary crown, it’s important to brush and floss your crown with the same diligence you would your actual tooth – and that means daily! You should also schedule regular dental visits so your dentist can monitor the situation and make sure everything is going smoothly with your treatment.

Temporary crowns can degrade faster than regular teeth due to the stress of chewing and brushing. That’s why it’s so important to take special care of your temporary crown and follow your dentist’s instructions.

How Do Temporary Crowns Look?

Patients commonly wonder, how do temporary crowns look

The good news is, temporary crowns should also look just like real teeth! You might be able to tell the difference if you look closely, but most people won’t notice it in person or in photos.

Additionally, even if your temporary crown is noticeable, it will soon be out of the picture once your permanent crown is placed.

Temporary Crown vs Permanent Crown: Find The Best Solution For Your Teeth  At Northside Dental Co.

When it comes to getting a crown, you won’t need to worry about choosing between a temporary crown vs a permanent crown. Instead, your dental crown procedure will require that you:

  1. Get a temporary crown placed on your tooth first
  2. Receive a permanent crown a few weeks later

Both temporary and permanent crowns cover an existing tooth that needs to be strengthened or repaired. Dentists also use them to secure implants and bridges in place. They’re strong and made to look like natural teeth.

Looking for an experienced dentist to handle your crown procedure?

At Northside Dental Co., we’re dedicated to providing the highest quality and least invasive dental procedures in a warm and caring environment. Our dental team is skilled and knowledgeable, and we pride ourselves on easing the stress associated with dental treatments. Whether you’re experiencing a dental issue that may require a permanent crown or just need a routine oral health checkup, we’ve got the dental solution for you.

Book your appointment online today to get the best dental care in the Richmond, VA area.