Do I Need a Crown or Filling?

Restorative Dentists in Wayland

Do I Need a Crown or Filling?

Restorative Dentists in Wayland, MITooth enamel is the strongest substance in your whole body, but over years of exposure to acidic and sugar foods and drinks it can erode.

To protect the natural tooth structure from further decay and damage a dentist can repair the cavity with a filling or in more severe cases, they can cover the whole tooth above the gumline with a crown.

But which option is better for you? Here’s a list of the differences between the two and examples of when each is the best option. You can contact our dentists in Cascade, Coopersville and Wayland today to schedule an appointment.

Which Is Best for You?

Crowns Fillings
  • Requires impressions
  • More expensive
  • Completed in 2 dental visits
  • Covers decayed teeth
  • Used for severely damaged or decayed tooth
  • No impressions required
  • More affordable
  • Completed in 1 dental visit
  • Fills in decayed teeth
  • Minor tooth damage or decay

Crowns Make More Sense When…

Crowns are best suited for severely damaged and weakened teeth, though they can be used for minor damage as well. In cases where the tooth has a lot of damage, a filling would not be enough to properly restore the tooth. 

Instead, a crown would be used for the job. Dental crowns are caps that cover decayed or cracked teeth. They protect the tooth from experiencing any further damage and sensitivity. When it comes to durability, crowns take the cake over tooth fillings. Because of this and the need for impressions, tooth crowns tend to be more expensive than fillings.

Dental crowns are different from fillings because they cover the entire visible portion of your tooth above the gum line. In fact, some of our patients call them “tooth caps.” For intensive tooth repair, a filling wouldn’t be capable of properly restoring the tooth to its natural function and appearance.

An experienced dentist will be able to advise you on whether a crown is necessary for the amount of tooth damage present. Teeth that have been weakened by repeated restorative dental treatments may also benefit by being fitted for dental crowns.

In order to apply a dental crown, we’ll need to custom-make the tooth cap to fit your smile. Then, the natural tooth will be shaved down so that the crown can fit over it. This can take two appointments to complete. 

Fillings Are Preferable When…

Fillings are meant for teeth that have minor tooth decay or damage. So, if you only have a small cavity or chip in your tooth, getting a tooth filling would make the most sense. You can, however, still get a crown if you’d like, but the downside is the higher cost. 

As the name suggests, cavity fillings are made out of dental amalgam or composite resin and fill in small areas in your tooth that have decayed or been otherwise damaged. Many patients appreciate fillings because they are less invasive than dental crowns

During the procedure, a qualified dental professional will drill to remove any decayed tooth matter and will then fill in the tooth with dental amalgam or composite resin. Unlike crowns, fillings only take one visit to complete. And because the process is not as involved, the cost of fillings is significantly less than that of crowns.

To prepare a tooth for a porcelain crown, the natural enamel must be filed down so the crown can easily fit over the top. With fillings, you are preserving as much enamel as possible to fill in only those areas that are damaged. Composite fillings also match the color of your natural tooth enamel which is perfect for teeth that show when you smile and talk.

The recovery period for a filling is short. After any local anesthetic has worn off, you should be able to eat and speak normally. Some minor sensitivity is normal right after your appointment, but it should dissipate fairly quickly.

Request an Appointment 

You can talk to our dentists about which option would be the best for you to make sure you’re getting the best oral health treatment for you and your teeth. Call our dentists in Cascade, Coopersville and Wayland at (888) 932-8669 to schedule an appointment.

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