Caring for an Elderly Parent With Special Dental Needs

Caring for an Elderly Parent With Special Dental Needs

Busting 3 Dental Crown Myths

Joe Lawrence

Dental crowns are used to essentially cap off the top of a tooth that is no longer structurally sound thanks to a cavity or some other type of damage. The cap covers up the sensitive inner portion of the tooth, which houses the root that can sometimes become infected, requiring a root canal. Crowns are a common dental procedure but there are still a few myths that you should unlearn before your dentist appointment.

Myth: Crowns Never Need Replacing

Crowns come in a variety of materials including metal, porcelain, and ceramic. The latter two look more natural but are also more prone to chipping and damage. Regardless of the material, crowns don't last forever and will eventually need replaced.

What's the average lifespan? A crown can last around 10 years with proper oral health care and might even stretch to 20 years. But you could greatly diminish the lifespan if you have poor oral health, grind your teeth or subject the crowned tooth to trauma.

Myth: Crowned Teeth are Cavity-Proof

One of the reasons that crowns need replacing is the worsening condition of the underlying tooth. Crowns do cover and protect cavity damage that exists at the time of the procedure. But the crown isn't a surefire protection against any future cavity damage.

If you eat a lot of sugar, consume acidic food and drink regularly, or are genetically prone to cavities, there's a good chance that you will need to get a more extensive crown in the future due to cavity growth. You may have to resort to tooth extraction if the cavity is too extensive, which would leave a gaping hole in your mouth unless you opt for a bridge or dental implant.

Myth: Every Crown Comes with a Root Canal

A root canal involves the dentist removing the existing, natural crown of your tooth to clean out infected pulp that runs down the center of the tooth to the root. Untreated infections can lead to pain, swelling, and the possibility of the infection moving throughout the body. Once the infection is cleaned out, the tooth has to be covered with an artificial crown to keep the root safe.

Crowns always go hand-in-hand with root canals. But root canals aren't the only reason people get crowns. As mentioned, cavity and trauma are major causes. But people also receive crowns when they get a bridge, which suspends an artificial tooth between two crowns to replace a missing tooth. Talk to a professional like Arrowhead Family Dentistry for more information.


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Caring for an Elderly Parent With Special Dental Needs

Caring for an elderly parent tends to be tough enough without the added stress of dealing with dental implants or dentures. But, the prospect is not the end of the world—there are many things you can do to ensure that your parent's dental health is not compromised without having to spend a lot of personal time doing the care yourself. Between working with the right dentist, hiring a service provider for part time work, and giving your parent the tools he or she needs to care for his or her own dental health at home, you'll find that dental health for your loved one isn't so tough or time consuming after all. Hopefully you are able to get the support and information you need right here.