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How Do You Correct A Dental Crown That No Longer Blends In With Your Natural Teeth?

When you have a dental crown placed on a tooth, the dental laboratory will manufacture the crown so that it's the same shade as the natural teeth surrounding it. This helps the crown blend seamlessly in with your smile. Over time, however, the shade of your natural teeth can change, and this can result in the crown suddenly becoming very noticeable — its shade is permanent once it's manufactured, and it won't change color in the same way that your natural teeth do.

If you have an older crown that no longer matches your natural teeth, you may be wondering if it can be corrected so that it blends in with your smile again. Unfortunately, there's no way to change the color of a dental crown once it has been created. However, you have two options available to you that can make your dental crown blend in with your natural teeth once again: whitening or replacement. To learn more about how they work to improve the appearance of your dental crown, read on.

Whitening Your Teeth

Dental crowns aren't affected by the hydrogen peroxide solution used at dentists' offices to whiten teeth. One solution for helping your old dental crown blend in better with the rest of your teeth is to whiten your natural teeth until the shade matches your crown. If your crown is fairly close in shade to your natural teeth, this may only take one or two whitening treatments.

Whitening your teeth to help your crown blend in better is a good option as long as you're willing to keep up with teeth whitening treatments. Your natural teeth will naturally darken over time, which means that they'll slowly drift away from the color of your crown — you'll need to keep whitening your natural teeth in order for your dental crown to blend in. However, teeth whitening treatments are inexpensive, so whitening your teeth is a good option if you don't want to pay for the full cost of replacing your crown.

Replacing Your Dental Crown

Since the color of a dental crown can't be changed once it has been created, the only way to permanently correct the color of the crown is to create a new one and replace your current crown with it. The procedure to replace a dental crown is very similar to the procedure you went through to place the initial crown on your tooth — the only difference is that a dentist will first need to dissolve the dental cement that binds the crown to the natural tooth underneath of it in order to remove the old crown. Your tooth will be measured again, and photos of your teeth will be sent to a dental laboratory so that a new crown with the correct color can be created.

Replacing a dental crown to correct its color is more expensive than whitening your teeth periodically, but it's a permanent solution. In addition, it's also a good choice if your old crown has been damaged in some way in addition to becoming discolored — replacing the crown can restore the form of the tooth along with correcting its color.

The right option for you depends on the condition of your crown and your willingness to periodically whiten your teeth. Whitening is safe for your teeth, but it can temporarily increase sensitivity, and you may eventually tire of having to whiten your teeth when your crown begins to become noticeable again. Additionally, it's usually a good idea to replace your dental crown outright if it's over a decade old — dental crown failures (such as cracking or chipping) become more frequent after this time, and replacing your old crown with a new one will stop that from happening.

If your dental crown no longer matches your natural teeth, schedule an appointment with a restorative dentistry service in your area. A restorative dentist can help you figure out whether or not whitening or full replacement is the best option to help your crown blend in with your natural teeth once again.

For more information on restorative dentistry, contact a company like Pacific Ave Dental/Allan L. Hablutzel, DDS.