Crowns are generally proposed when very little natural tooth structure remains that can be effectively sealed with other materials without a high risk of fracture. A crown is a little like a hat that covers the tooth, protecting it while restoring its strength.
Crafted in the laboratory, crowns are usually made from porcelain, a highly durable material that protects and reinforces the tooth. Porcelain is also the most aesthetic material, since it best mimics the appearance of natural teeth. In this sense, crowns are often used to create a more beautiful smile.
Once your tooth has been filed down to receive the crown, the dentist makes an impression. This is then used to make the crown in the laboratory. Once fabricated, the crown is cemented onto the tooth.
Crowns may also be affixed onto implants to replace missing teeth (see the Implant section).