Have you been in the dentist’s chair, and your dentist tells you, “We should put a crown in, to finally take care of that.” The dentist is doing their job, but you might suddenly start picturing bags of money disappearing from your bank.
While crowns are some of the most common dental restorations, they’re not the easiest to deal with — financially. It may come to a point where you ask yourself, “Do I actually need this crown? Or is my dentist pulling my leg?”
A simple upside to getting a crown is that it prolongs the life of the tooth, immediately and in the long run. The only time, caution is your best option is when a brand new dentist recommends several crowns at once. Then your nightmare of the disappearing money bags, may be more of a reality.
Here are five easy tips that answer the dreaded question, “Do I need this crown?” You can use it as a guide to your dental care, and really decide whether a crown is a right choice for you.
5 Things to Know Before Getting Dental Crowns
- Show Me The Proof
As we mentioned, some dentists (really very few) get a kick in taking your money. A good rule of thumb is: does it hurt when I bite down? If it does, your tooth might be cracked, which is a serious condition. Unlike broken bones, cracked teeth will not heal. The crack may be small or may travel the length of your tooth. A crack absolutely needs a crown and you’ll feel better for it in the future.
However, there are pesky things called craze lines. These are jagged lines that resemble cracks but don’t come with any of the painful side-effects. If you have a craze line, you might want a cosmetic fix. The craze line could develop into a crack, but it’s not immediate and there are ways to prevent it.
- You Have Options
Most of the time, getting a crown is only one of the options. Sometimes a filling will suffice. However, with a filling, you have to make sure it’s not too big and that it’s not a short term fix. Ask Dr. Trager for other options, but don’t automatically avoid the crown just because the other options seem easier.
- The Waiting Game
Ask Dr. Trager if you can wait before putting in a crown. He should give you the following options: 1) Yes, you can wait as nothing will happen, 2) The tooth could chip and need a simple repair, but it could also crack which would require a crown, 3) It could worsen and you would need a root canal, 4)The tooth could end up splitting and require an extraction.
This is a good question to ask and Dr. Trager will be ready to discuss this with you.
- To Root Canal or Not?
Generally, crowns don’t need a root canal. This comes about when the tooth isn’t infected or inflamed. If the tooth exhibits acute inflammation or an infection, then a root canal is necessary.
- Old Silver Fillings
If you have a silver filling that is ? the width of a tooth, or more, you might need a crown. The tooth is quite small at this point and it leaves it vulnerable. If you want to avoid cracking, you might want to consider a crown. However, if you think it’s fine and it’s not broken, then don’t fix it.
I hope those topics helped you get in the mindset of talking to Dr. Trager about crowns. There are no silly or stupid questions, just knowledgeable patients who can take charge of their health. All of us in the office hope you come to us with your dental questions, so we can answer them the best we can!
Dr Robert Trager, the Airport Dentist
Work for an airline? Why drive around to take care of your teeth? Your union dental coverage accepted.
Dr Robert M Trager is the JFK Dentist
JFK Airport Building 14 West Wing
Jamaica NY 11430
Email [email protected]
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Dr Robert M Trager is the LGA Dentist
Central Terminal Building
Room 3636 – West Connector
Flushing NY 11371
Email [email protected]
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