dental crowns

Everything you need to know about crowns, so you can treat your teeth like royalty

 
OVERVIEW
ROUTINE CLEANING
DENTAL HYGIENE
CANCER SCREENINGS
X-RAYS/IMAGING
DENTURES
TELEDENTISTRY
DENTAL SEALANTS
FLUORIDE TREATMENT
FILLINGS
SEDATION DENTISTRY
DENTAL CROWNS
BRIDGES
 

What are dental crowns and why would you need one?

Are you asking yourself what is a dental crown? Often known as a tooth-shaped cover or tooth cap, your dentist cements the crown on top of your tooth. As a result, it covers the visible portion of your tooth and restores its natural size, shape, and function. 


A dental crown is necessary for several situations. Dentists may use crowns to repair cavities that are too large for fillings—Crowns correct teeth which are cracked, broken, or worn down. Also, dental crowns cover misshapen or discolored teeth to help you feel more confident about your smile. Children need crowns in certain circumstances. For example, the child may have a badly damaged tooth that cannot support a filling. They may be a child who is at high risk of tooth decay. In certain circumstances, a dental crown decreases the need for a child to undergo frequent dental health procedures that require an anesthetic.

Illustration of tooth crowns, teeth in royal attire
 

The Benefits of Routine Dental Crowns

 

When you have a damaged tooth in need of restoration, a crown is an excellent way to protect the tooth from harmful bacteria and further decay while providing a strong layer that can withstand bite pressure and function as if the tooth was never damaged in the first place. 

 

Durable Solution

tooth and cog

Natural Appearance

sparkly tooth

Prevent Decay

tooth with a shield inside a yellow circle

Restore Appearance and Function

mouth with top teeth showing
 
Image of an individual smiling with red background
 

Dental Crown Procedure

Many dentists now offer same-day dental crowns. A digital 3D camera is used to make an impression. CEREC CAD/CAM software then maps the tooth for a precise fit. The image is sent to a milling machine in the office where the crown can be made on-site.  


Alternatively, a traditional crown procedure takes two visits. During your initial appointment, your dentist prepares the tooth that's receiving the crown. Next, your teeth need extra room for the new crown. So, your dentist files the top and sides of your tooth and impressions the reshaped tooth. These impressions go to a dental laboratory that will make your crown. Your dentist will then protect your prepared tooth with a temporary crown. 


When your new crown is ready in two (2) to three (3) weeks, you'll return for your second appointment. Your dentist removes your temporary crown and cements the permanent crown to your tooth. For more details about the step-by-step dental crown procedure, talk to your dentist. 

Illustration of Robotic arms working with teeth in a conveyor
 
 

Different Types of Dental Crowns

There are temporary crowns and permanent crowns. Your dentist's office makes your temporary crown while you wait for the final cap. Now, you can protect your tooth until your permanent crown arrives. Generally, acrylic-based materials comprise the crown. In other cases, your crown comes from stainless steel. There are five (5) different types of dental crowns that are permanent.

Gold Crowns

Gold crowns, also called gold tooth caps, are made from gold and other metals, such as chromium, nickel, or palladium. These can last for decades, but they’re more noticeable than other crown types.

Porcelain Crowns

Porcelain crowns have a more natural look than other types, making them a good choice for front teeth. Since there’s no metal used to create the crown, they may be a good choice for people with metal allergies.

Zirconia Crowns

Zirconia crowns come from a powerful type of metal called zirconium dioxide and can hold up well to strong chewing forces. They can be hard to match, but some have a layer of porcelain for a more natural look.

Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal Crowns

Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns have a metal interior and porcelain exterior. The metal provides added durability, while the porcelain offers a natural look. Over time, you may notice a dark line near your gums where the metal is visible.

Silver Tooth Caps

Silver tooth caps come from stainless steel. Silver crowns most often repair baby teeth. They're durable enough to stay in place until the baby tooth falls out.

 
 

What Type of Crown is Right for You

All dental crowns have advantages and disadvantages, so discuss the best crown for your needs with your dentist. Smile Generation wants you to consider the following factors: 
 

• Appearance. You may prefer a crown with a natural appearance to help you feel confident about your smile. If the crown is over a back tooth, appearance may be less of a concern.

 

• Durability. Some types of dental crowns are more durable than others. Crowns made of porcelain may chip, while those made from gold or other metals will rarely chip or break.

 

• Cost. Dental crown cost varies depending on the material you choose. If you have dental insurance, your plan may cover some of the cost. Talk with your dentist about your budget.

Illustration of a tooth crown with different options: Silver crowns, gold crowns, porcelain crown, and zirconia crowns, with an orange background
 
individual with beautiful teeth flossing in front of the mirror
 

Book an Appointment Today

 

If you’re suffering from cavity symptoms, consult your dentist to discuss the best methods for cavity prevention and treatment.

 
 

How Much Do Dental Crowns Cost?

In general, you can expect a dental crown price between $800 and $1,500. The type of crown you choose will affect your dental crown cost. For example, a porcelain crown costs an average of $1,219.36, according to the American Dental Association's 2018 Survey of Dental Fees. However, other types, such as porcelain-fused-to-metal, have a lower average cost of $1,082.38.

 

Does getting a crown hurt?

If your dentist recommends a tooth crown procedure, you may wonder: Does getting a crown hurt? Your dentist will likely use an injection of local anesthesia to numb the area. After the process, your crowned tooth may be sensitive to hot or cold foods and drinks. Do you feel pain when biting down? If so, the crown's fit may need to be adjusted.

 
 

Got questions?

 

We’ve got answers to all of your dental crown questions. Browse our FAQs here or give us a call at 1-800-SMILEGEN.

 

CEREC (Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramic) crowns are a specific type of crown. They differ from traditional crowns by being made and placed in about two hours, while traditional crowns require you to wear a temporary crown for several weeks before returning to the dentist to install the permanent crown. Otherwise, CEREC crowns and traditional crowns last about the same amount of time and cost about the same.

CEREC crowns are just as durable as regular crowns, lasting 10 to 15 years or longer depending on how well they are maintained. It is just as important to brush and floss a crown as a natural tooth to ensure its long life. CEREC crowns cost about the same as a regular crown and can be made in the same day rather than waiting for a week or more.

Yes, a specific type of crown, called a CEREC crown, can be created and placed within two hours. With CEREC crowns, there is no need to wear a temporary crown for several weeks and return to the office for a second visit to have the permanent crown placed. Everything is done in a single visit. This makes the crown experience much more convenient for the patient. Even though they take less time to place, CEREC crowns are just as durable and affordable as traditional crowns.

 

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Sources

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.). Dental Sealants Can Prevent Cavities. https://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/dental-sealants/index.html

Colgate. (n.d.). Dental Sealants: How Do They Work? https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/sealants/dental-sealants

Better Health Victoria. (n.d.). Dental Sealants. https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/ConditionsAndTreatments/dental-sealants

NewMouth. (n.d.). Tooth Sealants: Benefits, Procedure, and Cost. https://www.newmouth.com/dentistry/pediatric/tooth-sealants/