Dental crowns are a tooth-colored composite material that's placed entirely over a damaged tooth. The crown can protect the natural tooth from further decay due to cavity or gingivitis. If you suddenly lose part of a tooth due to trauma, a 24 hour dentist might place a temporary crown over the fragment until a permanent crown can be installed.
While dental crowns are common and often successful procedures, there are instances when crowns need to be replaced. Temporary crowns always have to come off for the permanent crown to take its place. But even permanent crowns need to be removed due to damage or loosening thanks to continued tooth decay.
Here's what to expect if you need to have a dental crown removed.
Temporary Crown Removal
Because temporary crowns are designed for removal, the process is relatively straightforward. Your dentist will use specialty crown removal pliers to shake the crown out of its loose bond to the natural tooth. The temporary crown is then pulled neatly away from the tooth using a straight motion to avoid bumping into neighboring teeth.
There is a slight potential for complications when removing a temporary crown. Neighboring teeth damage is the most common concern, but it's also possible for a careless dentist to scrape the gums with the pliers during removal. This can cause bleeding and possible infection if the tooth loss was caused by gingivitis.
Permanent Crown Removal
The removal of permanent crowns is trickier and carries more risk of complications, though the overall risk is still fairly low.
Your dentist will likely use a sanding drill bit along the edges of the permanent crown where it connects to your natural teeth. Once this border becomes looser, the dentist uses a chisel to cut a seam down the center of the permanent crown. The pliers can then be used to pull the crown free of the natural tooth.
Why does this removal process carry greater risk than the temporary crown? Your dentist could accidentally pierce your gums with the sanding tool. The gums are also home to the jawbone and a lot of nerves. Grazing or cutting any of those anatomical structures could cause pain and further dental complications.
Ultimately, if you visit a dentist you trust due to past experiences or professional reputation, crown removal risks shouldn't be a concern. But before you have a permanent crown removed, you and the dentist should discuss your replacement options and how or why these methods will work better than the crown that was just removed.
For more information, contact an experienced dentist, like Milan Simanek DDS .