A single dental crown is the most common restorative treatment, according to the American College of Prosthodontics. Placing a custom-made cap over the surface of a tooth provides preventive, restorative, and cosmetic benefits using a long-term solution. On average, a crown lasts for 5 to 15 years with the right aftercare. You can ensure you get the most from your investment by following a few tips after your crown placement.
Immediately After Getting Your Crown
Placing a crown is a simple procedure with minimal recovery time. It can take a few days to get used to the restoration. Here are 4 things you can expect to make the transition easier:
A local anesthetic may be used to keep you comfortable during the procedure. Effects of the numbing agent can last for several hours, so you’ll want to avoid any hot liquids or foods to prevent burns. Eat softer foods during this time to lessen the risk of an oral injury.
- Manage Pain and Discomfort
Your tooth and surrounding gum tissue may be tender for a few days. It’s not unusual to have swelling or bruising. Take an OTC pain reliever to manage any discomfort. Applying a cold compress can numb the area and reduce inflammation.
- Watch What You Eat
Your dentist will recommend eating softer foods for at least 24 hours. You can resume your regular diet as your discomfort improves.
- Keep Your Mouth Clean
Maintain your oral hygiene routine. Although your crown isn’t subject to decay, your underlying tooth can still get cavities. Brush twice daily and floss every night before going to bed.
Long-Term Dental Crown Care
Various factors affect the lifespan of a crown, like the materials used and your aftercare routine. You can ensure your restoration lasts for a decade or longer with a few easy tips:
- Commit to Your Oral Hygiene
Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and nonabrasive toothpaste to brush your teeth for 2 minutes at least twice a day. Use high-quality dental floss to clean between each tooth daily.
- Visit Your Dentist
Besides caring for your smile at home, visit your dentist every 6 months for a cleaning and checkup.
- Limit Hard & Sticky Foods
Your crown will be made of durable materials, but your dentist will recommend avoiding hard or sticky foods.
- Treat Bruxism
Ask your dentist for a nightguard if you have a habit of grinding or clenching your teeth.
- Live Healthy Lifestyle
Don’t smoke or drink alcohol excessively. Eat a balanced diet that’s limited in sugars and starches.
- Break Bad Oral Habits
Don’t use your teeth to open packaging or chew on inedible objects.
You can have peace of mind knowing your restoration will last for many years with the best care at home. You’ll benefit from a natural-looking solution that feels just like your real tooth.
About Dr. Shelly Strohman
Dr. Strohman earned her dental degree from the UMKC School of Dentistry and has continued her education in many advanced services, like Level 1 Sedation. She is a proud member of various professional organizations, including the American Dental Association. If you need a dental crown, contact our office today to request your consultation.