Dental Implants: Pros and Cons

4 Reasons To Treat A Cavity With A Crown Instead Of A Filling

by Brett Clark

Even if you avoid eating sugary snacks and brush and floss religiously each day, you can still develop cavities over time. Luckily enough, those cavities can be treated by your dentist. In most cases, this will involve having a filling. As the name implies, fillings are applied to a cavity in order to fill it out.

However, you might also be given the option to restore a cavity with a crown. These are essentially protective caps that are fitted over the damaged tooth. A filling will do fine in most cases, but here are just four reasons you might want to opt for a crown instead.

1. Added Strength 

The larger a cavity, the more likely it is that a filling will fail. This can mean the filling comes loose, and it can also negatively impact the structural integrity of the affected tooth. If you have several cavities or a larger single cavity, it's worth considering a crown instead of a filling. They will be far less likely to fail than fillings since they are able to put up with more strain and don't have to depend as much on the remaining natural tooth structure.

2. Reduced Sensitivity

When you get a cavity, hot and cold temperatures will be better able to penetrate past the tough outer layer of enamel to the more sensitive dentin and pulp, which is why sensitivity is a common warning sign of cavities. Fillings can help to some degree, but patients who suffer from acute sensitivity will often be better off with crowns. Since crowns provide better protection by essentially sealing off the damaged section of the tooth, sensitivity tends to be less of a problem.

3. Natural Appearance   

A crown is designed to look just like a regular tooth, and your dentist will be able to provide one of the ideal colour, size, and shape to create an aesthetically pleasing final result. Fillings are less capable of making aesthetic changes. Since the loss of enamel associated with cavities can often cause teeth to darken or yellow, it often makes sense to choose a restoration option that can improve the damaged tooth's appearance.

4. Longer Lifespan

Even if a filling takes years to fail, it almost certainly isn't going to last as long as a crown. Over time, further changes in the affected tooth can cause fillings to come loose, at which point you will need to have another one fitted. While crowns do not last forever, they are designed to last significantly longer than fillings. If you want your restoration to last as long as possible before requiring attention, a crown will probably appeal over a filling.

Contact a dentist for more information.