Why A Dentist May Recommend Tooth Crowns for Kids

Dental crowns (also known as caps) are protective and functional tooth coverings that rest on top of damaged teeth. A dentist may recommend a crown for a child if they have found large cavities that cannot be resolved with a traditional filling, or the primary (baby) tooth is chipped or not growing correctly.

The purpose of a dental crown is to protect and support the tooth when fillings are not sufficient and to protect other areas of the mouth from further infection. Crowns act like a natural tooth, and crown restoration treatment involves removing all the compromised or infected parts of the damaged tooth and sealing the crown on top with a strong but flexible adhesive.

Dental crowns are designed to last as long as the natural lifespan of the tooth. They are highly durable and shaped to match your child’s other teeth to support healthy development.

Why Are Crowns Recommended For Children’s Teeth?

crowns for kids

Your dentist will recommend crowns if your child is experiencing significant tooth decay and your child’s teeth are not strong enough to apply a filling, or the tooth is chipped.

It may be one of those procedures that parents dread, but applying a crown prevents further decay of the affected tooth and protects the other teeth. Corrective tooth treatment for children is recommended from an early age if required.

Why Would A Child’s Tooth Need a Crown?

Tooth crowns for kids are available if they have a severely decaying or damaged tooth or a primary tooth that is infected or not growing correctly.

The Longevity of Your Kid’s Teeth

Children’s teeth have a crucial growth period, and they mustn’t fall out too soon. Dental crowns are used in baby and child tooth restoration and support optimal growth into adulthood.

Brushing Away Early Decay

Decayed enamel cannot regrow and will worsen over time. Therefore crowns are used to replace decayed or broken tooth structure, restoring the full strength back to the tooth.   Crowns also prevent the baby tooth from getting any more decay.

Do Away with Cavities

Crowns do not experience deterioration and are not vulnerable to cavities. While smaller cavities can be fixed with a filling, larger cavities may require a crown to prevent further damage to the tooth.

Cracked or Chipped Tooth

Cracked or chipped teeth can harm the healthy development of the entire mouth. Chipped and cracked teeth can affect your child’s eating and speech, and crowns are the best long-term solution. They also restore your child’s natural smile.

What Types of Baby Teeth Crowns Are There?

Dental caps or crowns support oral health in baby teeth. Pediatric dentists will only recommend a type of crown that will appropriately support the natural growth of infant teeth.

All types of crowns are seated firmly into place yet allow a degree of flexibility to accommodate your child’s growing and expanding jawline.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel crowns are most commonly used to correct large molar abnormalities and are the strongest option for supporting tooth structure.

We normally call these ‘princess crowns’ or ‘superman teeth’ and children often love to show their friends at show and tell.  They are a tried and tested method for strengthening baby teeth.  The procedure is very well tolerated by children and once done will generally last until the baby tooth is naturally lost.  

Composite Strip

Composite strip crowns (or peel off crowns) are used to protect against secondary cavities and restore fractured front teeth. A mould of your child’s teeth is taken to make the crown and later applied on a strip which is peeled away, leaving behind the restored tooth.

Composite strip crowns are thin and transparent and produce natural-looking results. They are a simple and effective solution for broken front teeth however are usually not strong enough to use for the molar teeth. 

Zirconia Ceramic

Zirconia Ceramic crowns are a white aesthetic alternative to stainless steel but are more fiddly to place and require the baby tooth to be reshaped significantly.  They are generally not the go to option for children’s crowns but are available if parents have a strong opposition to stainless steel crowns for aesthetic reasons.  

When Is It Necessary to Put Crowns On Baby Teeth?

Your dentist may recommend crowns for baby teeth if a significant cavity is found or the tooth is chipped and requires restoration.

Baby teeth are not permanent; therefore, the enamel of the tooth is thinner and weaker than adult teeth, and the pulp inside the tooth is less developed. Overall, baby teeth are much more vulnerable to the spread of decay and may need treatment.

Applying a crown to baby teeth helps support the continuation of the development of the entire mouth and assists in the development of speaking and eating.


Like all pediatric dental treatments, your dentist will advise you on the best course of action according to your kids’ needs, but it is ultimately the decision of the parent whether any treatment is delivered.

If you have concerns about crowns for your child’s dental health or have questions about infant tooth decay, contact your local dental practice and book an appointment.

Whitehorse Dental is a leading authority on pediatric dentistry. Our practice provides dental support for children and parents and delivers the healthiest and most cost-effective treatments for the entire family.