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Why Do I Need A Dental Crown Instead Of A Filling?

Why Do I Need Dental Crowns Instead Of Fillings?

During your regular dental checkup, your dentist in Fort Lauderdale examines your teeth both visually and using dental x-rays to detect areas of decay (cavities) and damage.  If your dentist detects an area of decay or a damaged tooth, they will likely treatment plan a dental filling to repair your tooth.  Dental fillings are highly effective and act to prevent the decay-causing bacteria from spreading and to restore your tooth’s health.  Dental fillings are considered a basic dental service and are covered by most insurance policies.  They generally last five years or more depending on the quality of materials used as well as your home care routine.  When you regularly visit your dentist for dental checkups, any decay can be discovered and treated before it gets severe. 
When the area of decay or damage is larger than a filling can repair, a crown may be the best treatment option to restore your tooth.  Most people are familiar dental crowns, sometimes referred to as a dental "cap."  Your dentist in Fort Lauderdale places crowns on teeth that have cavities that are too large to repair with a dental filling or teeth that have become damaged, cracked, or have had root canal therapy.   As a major restorative dental service, crowns have a higher cost associated compared to dental fillings. This cost can cause some patients to wonder if they can just get by with a filling.

At Excellence in Dentistry in Fort Lauderdale, Dr. Rotroff and Dr. Wasselle will always recommend what is best for your teeth, whether that is a dental crown or a filling. Thus, it is important that you understand why you may need a crown and what purpose the crown itself serves.  When determining whether a dental filling or crown would be the more effective treatment option, your dentist will consider the following factors:

Size of the cavity

When a cavity is detected early while it is still small, a filling is usually adequate to restore your tooth.  However, when you skip your regular dental checkups, tooth decay can go untreated for a long time allowing it to spread and destroy a large portion of your tooth structure.  If when the decay is removed, there is inadequate tooth structure remaining to support a filling, a dental crown is placed to restore the function and appearance of your tooth.

Tooth condition

Teeth with existing older fillings or teeth that have had fillings replaced a number times may be too unstable to support a dental filling and it may be time for a dental crown.  Any dental restoration must be strong enough to withstand normal biting and chewing without cracking or breaking. 

Broken or cracked teeth

When a tooth becomes cracked, a dental filling is not sufficient to restore a cracked tooth regardless of the severity of the damage. Your Fort Lauderdale dentist will place a crown to protect your cracked tooth from further damage.  Depending on the size and location of the broken portion of your tooth, you may or may not be able to restore your tooth with a filling. 

Root canal

Following root canal therapy, your tooth will be restored with a crown. The crown should be placed as soon as possible after your root canal procedure to protect your tooth and prevent any future problems. A crown restores the outside structure, esthetics, and function of your tooth.


Whether you need a filling, a crown, dental implants, veneers, dental bonding or any other dental services, select the best dentist Fort Lauderdale has to offer by calling Excellence in Dentistry at 954-928-1666.  Our friendly staff will assist with all of your questions and concerns and schedule an appointment for you at our office located at 2480 E. Commercial Boulevard. If you are searching for a dentist taking new patients, call Excellence in Dentistry. Dr. Rotroff and Dr. Wasselle accept and are in-network dental providers for many PPO dental insurance companies.  With over 60 years combined experience providing the highest quality dental services to our satisfied patients, Dr. Rotroff and Dr. Wasselle exemplify Excellence in Dentistry.


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