Crowns Summary

Dental crowns improve both the strength and appearance of your teeth. A dental crown covers an individual tooth. They are custom made and they are designed to look like a natural tooth.

Reasons to get a dental crown:
  • To protect a tooth that had a root canal
  • To protect a tooth that is weak
  • To hold a cracked tooth together and seal it from decay
  • To cover a discolored tooth
  • To restore a weak tooth
  • To improve the cosmetic appearance of a tooth
  • To support the replaced tooth in a bridge
  • To restore natural bite

Length of the procedure: 2 dental office visits

Hospital Stay: Dental crowns are placed in an outpatient procedure.

Recovery before traveling home: Patients seeking dental crowns through medical tourism can return home in 3 weeks or sooner if they wish to make two trips.

Travel Tip: This procedure requires more than one procedure. You can stay the length of time between both procedures, which is typically 2 to 3 weeks or you can go home and return for your second procedure.

Procedure Details

The procedure will begin the administration of a local anesthetic to numb the area being treated. The tooth will then be cleaned and any decay will be removed using a dental drill. Then, the dentist will grind the tooth down so that the crown will fit better.

Once the area has been prepared the dentist can place the crown. They will apply dental putty first to make an impression of the tooth. This impression is sent to a laboratory so the permanent crown can be made. Then, the dentist will place a temporary crown over the tooth to protect it while the permanent crown is being made.

When the temporary crown is made you will return to the dentist office for your second procedure. The temporary crown will be removed. The tooth will again be cleaned and it will be roughed up with a drill. Etching acid and dental cement will be applied to the tooth and the cap will be placed.

After the Procedure

After your dental crown procedures are done you may experience some discomfort for a day or so. You may have some swelling and a dull ache. The cap may also have a strange feeling that takes some getting use to. The cap will be fully functional 24 hours after it is placed. You can care for a dental crown as you would your regular teeth.


In general the placement of dental crowns is very successful. Many people have concerns about their dental crown looking natural. Fortunately the more advanced, modern dental crowns look and feel very natural. In general a dental crown lasts for about 10 years. However, a dental crown can last for less time if proper care of it is neglected. It is very important to follow your dentist care instruction and maintain an adequate oral hygiene routine.

Risks and Complications

As is with any procedure there are risks associated with getting dental crowns. The following is a list of the most common risks and complications:

  • Reaction to anesthetic or medication
  • Bleeding
  • Infection of implant site
  • Structural injury or damage near implant site
  • Tooth injury or damage near implant site
  • Nerve damage
  • Tingling or numbness of the teeth, gums, lips or chin
  • Sinus problems
  • Receding gums
  • Debonding
  • Inflammation
  • Chipping
  • Hot cold sensitivity

Contact your physician if any of the following occur:
  • Bleeding of gums
  • Gum pain
  • Sharp pain
  • Swelling is severe or persistent
  • Fever is 100.4 degrees or higher
  • Chills
  • Sensitivity to food is severe
  • Chewing difficulty
  • Crown comes loose