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Stainless steel crowns (SSCs) are metal crowns that restore:
Dentists often use them to temporarily restore a child’s tooth and prevent the premature loss of baby teeth.
SSCs may also be placed after a pulpotomy, root canal, or in teeth with large cavities where other restorations are likely to fail. Since the 1950s, SSCs have been a valuable restorative material and treatment of choice by pediatric dentists because they are durable, strong, and affordable.
The advantages of stainless steel crowns for children include:
There are various indicators for stainless steel crown placement in pediatric dentistry:4
Stainless steel crowns, also referred to as caps, are pre-made and sized to fit over a child’s tooth. Dentists seal them in place with dental cement.
There are two types of SSCs available:
Precontoured Crowns — this type of crown is the most popular because it closely resembles the shape and look of natural teeth. They are pre-contoured before placement and typically do not require much trimming.
Pre-trimmed Crowns — pre-trimmed means it is already trimmed according to a specific size. They do not require trimming to fit the tooth. These crowns have straight, non-contoured sides.
Cavities are the primary reason why SSCs are needed. They are mainly caused by plaque buildup.
Plaque attacks the tooth enamel, which causes holes and dark brown spots on teeth. If it is not removed completely, calculus (hardened plaque) forms and can only be removed by a pediatric dentist.
Primary or baby teeth are more susceptible to cavities and tooth decay because they have thinner enamel.
Here are four common causes of cavities in primary and permanent teeth:
Children and adolescents who consume foods and drinks high in sugar, such as candy and juices, are more susceptible to tooth decay.
Starches, such as chips, pasta, and bread can also lead to cavity development because they are high in carbohydrates, which turn into sugar.
Adolescents and teens who begin smoking or chewing tobacco early are more prone to tooth decay, tooth discoloration, and gingivitis (gum disease).
Eating sugary foods and smoking regularly can lead to enamel breakdown and cavity formation.
Poor oral health can cause a buildup of plaque and bacteria. A good oral health routine includes:
Every six months, children and adolescents should also visit a dentist for professional teeth cleanings, fluoride treatments, and dental exams. During the exams, pediatric dentists look for signs of tooth decay and determine the best treatment option, including SSCs or cavity fillings.
Dry mouth occurs when the salivary glands in the mouth do not make enough saliva and can be caused by some medications. Over time, dry mouth often results in cavity formation.
Adults and seniors are more prone to dry mouth because they take medications more often than children.
Medications that can cause dry mouth and tooth decay in children include:
The prices below reflect procedure costs without insurance:
Since dental restorations are medically necessary, part or most of the procedures are covered by a good insurance policy.
Stainless steel crowns are cost-effective, long-lasting, and have a high success rate. The cost of a stainless steel crown depends on the dentist’s location and how many are needed.
If a stainless steel crown is placed temporarily, it will be easy to remove. Permanent crowns are permanently cemented to teeth and are very difficult to remove.
Stainless steel crowns are typically not recommended because they can contain up to 12% nickel.
Alternative options are available that do not damage your teeth as much.
Stainless steel crowns (SSCs) are rarely used on adults.
While SSCs are strong, they are not the most natural-looking and durable type of dental crown available. If an adult does get a stainless steel crown, it will only be used temporarily while the permanent crown is being fabricated.
Stainless steel crowns can last for four years or more.
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