Chipped or fractured teeth, broken down fillings, teeth that are malformed, malpositioned or discoloured: any and all of these conditions can affect your smile. Fortunately, a crown can easily restore your appearance. Crowns, or "caps", are coverings that fit over your teeth. Their purpose is to restore each tooth to its normal shape and size, while both strengthening and improving its appearance. Natural-looking porcelain attached to a durable metal shell is the most common material used to create a crown because of its strength. However, a crown could also be made of gold alloys or non-precious alloys, ceramic, acrylic or composite resin, or any combination of these. New cosmetic crowns are made of special ceramics which look far more natural. Tooth location, the position of the gum tissue, the amount of tooth that shows when you smile, the colour and shade of the tooth, and the function of the tooth are all taken into consideration when choosing which material to use.