Dental crowns are an effective way to restore your smile and the functionality of a damaged tooth without having the tooth removed. If you have teeth that are severely damaged or compromised, you should talk to your dentist on the possibility of having crowns mounted on them to restore their appearance and function. Before you take this step, you need to have some information about crowns, the procedure to install them, and the cost involved. Below are some crucial points.
What is a dental crown?
A dental crown is a covering that is mounted on severely damaged teeth to restore their form and function without removing the teeth. Dental crowns get designed to have the exact shape and size of the teeth that they are going to fix. Therefore, once they have bonded where they are mounted, it may not be easy for other people to differentiate them from your natural teeth.
Reasons for using dental crowns
The primary use of dental crowns is to repair severely damaged teeth that may be difficult to restore through procedures such as filling and bonding. Your dentist can recommend that you have dental crowns installed due to one or more of the following reasons:
- To replace a damaged tooth structure so that the tooth can support a large filling.
- To protect fragile teeth from being damaged
- To hold a dental bridge in place
- To cosmetically enhance your smile
- To conceal a dental implant
- To restore the natural appearance of crooked or stained teeth
- To provide a covering for a tooth that has undergone a root canal process
Dental crowns come in different forms
If you decide to have crowns fitted in your mouth, you should also talk to your dentist about the various types of dental crowns that are available. There are four types of dental crowns, each with different properties. Details about each type of dental crown are listed below.
- Ceramic crowns: Ceramic crowns are useful in restoring the front teeth (incisors). These crowns are famous for use with the incisors because they get matched with the natural color of your teeth. Ceramic crowns get manufactured from porcelain-based materials.
- Crowns made of porcelain fused to metal: Crowns of this type offer a stronger bond compared to porcelain-only crowns because they get bonded to a metal structure. They are also highly durable.
- Gold alloy crowns: Gold alloy crowns have a structure made up of gold, copper, and other types of metals. Dental crowns of this type not only have a strong bond to the tooth on which they get fitted. They also do not break, and they do not cause the tooth to wear away.
- Crowns made of base metal alloys: Crowns assembled from base metal alloys have a high ability to resist corrosion. Additionally, they are firm. Dental crowns of this type also require a minimal amount of the natural tooth to be removed before they get fitted.
How the differences in the properties of the various kinds of dental crowns compare
According to the American Dental Association, the sealing capability of all-porcelain dental crowns depends on the materials used for filling, and the properties of the tooth that is getting restored. On the other hand, the three different types of dental crowns have notably excellent sealing properties.
When it comes to durability, gold alloy and base metal alloy crowns stand out. All the porcelain dental crowns tend to be less firm are more susceptible when placed under notable pressure (such as when you grind teeth), and this can pose a problem. Crowns made of porcelain fused to metal are more durable than all-porcelain ones. While both types of crowns that have porcelain are resistant to wear and tear, they can easily damage opposing teeth if the teeth develop rough surfaces. Gold and metal alloy crowns are highly resilient and, at the same time, non-aggravating to the opposing teeth.
The dental crown procedure
You will need to visit your dentist at least two times to complete the dental crown installation process. On your first visit, the dentist will examine the damaged tooth to ascertain whether it can support a crown. The dentist will also prepare the tooth by shaping it so that it can accommodate a crown. The dentist will take an image of the tooth and forward it to the laboratory so that a dental crown that matches your tooth can get made. You will also get a temporary crown on the shaped tooth.
During your other visits, the dentist will replace the temporary crown with the new one. The new dental crown is cemented in place so that it can bond to the tooth.
Cost of installing dental crowns
Dental crown installation costs vary depending on the country in which you live and the type of dental crown that you choose. Porcelain crowns are typically more costly compared to gold alloy crowns, which are more expensive than crowns made of porcelain fused to metal.
Overall, the cost of dental crowns ranges between $800 and $1700 or more per dental crown.
An alternative way to get a lower cost for crowns: Dental tourism
Dental Tourism means traveling abroad to get dental services at a bargain price. That phenomenon bases on the fact that the cost of living in a country determines the cost of services. You can benefit from dental tourism by traveling to Tijuana, Mexico, where you will still get high-quality dental crown services at a much lower price.
With dental crowns, you can have your severely damaged teeth restored so that you can have a pleasant smile and healthily performs other functions. You need to understand what dental crowns are and talk to your dentist about the possibility of having them fitted in your mouth. It is also essential to understand the properties of the different types of crown and their prices. Given that the cost of installing dental crowns may be prohibitive, you should take advantage of dental tourism to get quality treatment at an affordable price.