Ask Dr. Diesburg: Why do I need to get my crown replaced?

Feb 25, 2015

Dear Dr. Diesburg,

Aren’t crowns permanent? I have to get mine replaced now and I thought I had it fixed.

Thanks,

Don in McMinnville

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Dear Don,

Thanks for your question. Beyond taking a tooth out, there aren’t any permanent fixes in the mouth. A crown can last a lifetime, but if you get decay around the base of it or it breaks in a way that the dentist cannot patch or fix, then you will have to replace the crown entirely.

Many factors influence how long a crown will last. The strength of your jaw, how many teeth you have in your mouth, how evenly the biting force is spread out, how you use your teeth, what you eat, whether your clench or grind your teeth (bruxing), or external trauma all have the potential to shorten a crown’s lifespan. But oral hygiene – whether you have the habits at home to keep your teeth cavity-free – is the largest factor you can control in how long a crown will last.

We use different materials to make crowns at our office and I’d be happy to talk to you about the benefits and drawbacks of each for your particular situation at your next appointment.

Happy Brushing!

Dr. Diesburg

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