Top of the page
A crown (often called a cap) fits over and replaces the entire part of a decayed tooth above the gum line. It encases the tooth and becomes the tooth's new outer surface.
You may need two or more visits to your dentist to repair a tooth with a crown.
Crowns may be made of porcelain or a metal base covered with a thin layer of ceramic that matches your teeth and looks like a normal, healthy tooth. Crowns for the teeth in the back of the mouth may be made of gold.
During your first visit, your dentist will get your tooth ready for a crown. They'll also make an impression of your teeth to create a mould used for making the crown. The crown may be temporary at first. In this case, you will need another visit.
Your lips and gums may stay numb (frozen) for a few hours until the anesthetic wears off. To avoid injuring your mouth, be careful not to chew on your numb lip or cheek.
A crown is used to:
A crown will work just like a healthy tooth. Teeth with crowns can decay at the gum-line, come loose, or wear out over time. So you may need to get a crown cemented again or replaced.
A dental crown is a common procedure. You will usually need more than 1 dental appointment. Depending on the condition of your tooth and where it is in your mouth, you may need a root canal before or after the procedure. The dentist will explain what procedures and in what order you’ll need them before any are started. This is a good time to discuss any questions or concerns you may have.
Adaptation Date: 3/1/2022
Adapted By: Alberta Health Services
Adaptation Reviewed By: Alberta Health Services
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2023 Healthwise, Incorporated. All rights reserved. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.