When do you need a crown?

A crown is placed when a tooth breaks or has suffered a crack. A crown also helps restore a tooth when a cavity or existing defective filling is too large to have the tooth refilled, leaving the tooth vulnerable for fracture. At our office, we will help communicate the condition of your tooth and explain why a tooth will need a crown. The following photos are actual case photos for educational purposes:
This shows a molar that should have had a crown. As you can see, the surrounding enamel is unsupported due to the large size of the filling. A buildup and porcelain crown was treatment planned for this molar. The patient reported that the filling was only 3 years old.

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Note the decay and the crack discovered after the amalgam filling was removed. Decay was removed and a composite core buildup was bonded into place. A temporary crown was made to prevent the tooth from splitting into two halves. We allowed time to see if the symptoms would go away. The tooth eventually needed a root canal when the symptoms did not go away while the tooth had the temporary crown. A permanent crown was later made after the root canal was completed. The tooth was saved and the patient is able to chew on the tooth again.