Plaster Board Ceiling Cracks

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markjb
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Q:

We have linear ceiling cracks forming along tape lines.  The ceiling is gypsum panels with a swirl plaster finish, and the panel edges are increasingly visible, or even splitting the thincoat, swirled plaster finish.

Aside from screwing 1" x 3" boards to simply cover the ceiling with new drywall, are their any other repair options?  The ceiling is not falling, but the aestheics are now a problem.