Pediatric dental crowns help to save damaged primary teeth so that they don’t have to be extracted.
Crowns are created to completely cover the tooth, protect it, and hold it together to prevent further damage.
Your child may need a crown to restore a damaged tooth after a fall or sports injury. A crown may also be recommended for a tooth that is too damaged by decay to support a filling.
Even though children lose their primary teeth, a dental crown is a good idea for your child if…
- They will have that tooth for more than two more years. Many children don’t lose all their primary teeth until they are 12 or 13! We try not to extract teeth if we can help it because extractions are painful. Crowns are less invasive and ensure that primary teeth can fall out naturally.
- They will need space held for the alignment of their permanent teeth. Keeping your child’s primary teeth intact is important because it saves the much needed space that your child’s adult teeth will need. In other words, keeping baby teeth can lessen the likelihood of braces!
What is involved in putting a crown on my child’s tooth?
Pediatric dental crowns are done in one visit and can be completed in about 45 minutes.
Once we determine the best type of sedation for your child, our experienced dental team will take the following steps:
- Numb the tooth and repair any damage.
- Shave down the tooth so that the crown can fit comfortably in the mouth.
- Shape the crown into a perfect fit for your child’s tooth.
- Attach the crown to the tooth with a special cement.
What types of dental crowns are available for kids?
We will work together to pick the type of crown that would be the best fit for your child. There are three types of crowns for kids:
- Stainless Steel: These are the strongest and are made from the same stainless steel used to make silverware. These crowns are not amalgam and do not contain any mercury. These are not used for front teeth since there are more aesthetic alternatives.
- Stainless Steel with Resin Facing: These crowns have the strength of stainless steel with a lovely white resin coating. We use these on the front teeth, and they look great! With these crowns, it’s important that your child stay away from sticky, gummy foods.
- Zirconium: These crowns are the most aesthetic alternative, as well as the most expensive and most fragile. If you want to make these crowns last, you must make sure that your child’s diet is free from sticky, gummy foods.
How do we take care of my child’s dental crown?
- Brush well and gently 2-3 times a day. Regular brushing is the first line of defense against tooth decay!
- Floss daily with extra attention where the crown meets the gum line.
- Use antibacterial mouthwash to prevent gum irritation. Healthy gums are happy gums!
- Avoid any gummy or sticky foods, which pull on (and potentially remove) the crown.
- Avoid chewing on ice, which can potentially crack or damage the crown.
- Talk to your dentist if your child grinds their teeth. Teeth grinding will damage fillings and crowns.
- See your pediatric dentist twice a year. Regular dental visits are the key to maintaining your child’s oral health!
If your child experiences the following, contact your pediatric dentist:
- Tooth pain, swelling, or increased sensitivity around their tooth or jaw.
- Irritated gums
- The crown appears to be damaged.
- The crown is more than five years old.
If your child needs a crown or a crown replacement, give us a call!
We make our dental visits as positive an experience as possible, and we are committed to making sure your child feels safe and cared for by our entire dental team of pediatric dentists and hygienists.