The crown of a tooth is the part of the tooth that extends above the gum line. When the crown of a tooth becomes badly damaged because of extensive decay or because of fracture or because of cracks or if it has developmental defects, then a laboratory fabricated crown or cap is precision fitted and bonded-on to cover it over.

The typical crown needs to be strong to last through years of heavy repetitive biting, chewing and grinding. High strength crowns derive their resistance and durability from the sub-layer of the crown which is made of metal (i.e.  a PFM or Porcelain Fused to Metal crown). The structure of a PFM is like the bathtub where there is a high strength metal core with a weaker but prettier ceramic material. The best metals are high-noble compositions having over 88% gold and additionally alloyed with platinum and a few other trace metals which are necessary for processing and fabrication . Core alternatives to metal are available today as emerging technologies.  These high strength ceramics are composed of either aluminum oxide or zirconium oxide. Well fabricated crowns can easily last 10 to 20 years or longer.

All Ceramic Crown restoring a damaged tooth:


For other pictures of actual treatment crowns, see Treatment Examples in the header at the top of this page.