A dental crown is a covering that will wrap and protect the entire surface of a tooth, allowing it to look and function just like the original tooth. These restorations are placed to strengthen a tooth that has been weakened, cracked, decayed, or otherwise damaged. Dental crowns work to bolster a compromised tooth while protecting the existing structure, extending the life of the tooth longer than it would last with a tooth-colored filling or another restoration. Once fastened to the enamel, a crown should fit naturally within your bite and appear seamlessly among your surrounding teeth.
“I have had 2 crowns and a couple of fillings done by Dr. Griffiths; and with another couple of crowns to go. I have had an excellent experience at this office in all aspects. What I have noticed is that Dr. Griffiths takes his time and very meticulous with his work. At other dental offices I have gone to in the past, the dentist would go from room to room treating multiple patients. With Dr. Griffiths, he stays with you from start to finish. I would highly recommend this office.”
- Dental Crown Reasons
- Dental Crown Candidates
- Types of Dental Crowns
- Dental Crowns Procedure
- Dental Crown Results
- Dental Crown Cost
Reasons for Choosing a Dental Crown
Dental crowns are very versatile restorations that can be used alone, or in conjunction with dental implants and bridges to replace missing or lost teeth. Crowns can correct a variety of problems you might be experiencing with your teeth, including repairing:
- Fractured or broken teeth
- Severely decayed teeth
- Cosmetic imperfections
- Fractured fillings
In addition to saving a damaged tooth, dental crowns can also serve as additional protection after a root canal. While a consultation is truly the best way to determine whether a crown is the best treatment option for your unique needs, this restoration can offer functional and aesthetic advantages for a wide range of patients.
Who is a Candidate for Dental Crowns?
A dental crown can benefit individuals who require additional protection for one or more teeth. If you have a cavity that’s too large to be addressed with a filling, a crown is generally recommended to restore the affected tooth. This restoration can be an excellent solution to rehabilitate teeth that have been:
- Broken or cracked
- Decayed or weakened
- Infected, but treated with a root canal
Crowns are generally reserved for more functional concerns, such as situations wherein a damaged tooth is making it difficult to bite. If you experience cracks or chips in the enamel that affect the appearance of your smile but do not threaten tooth function, porcelain veneers may be enough to fix minor cosmetic imperfections. Dr. Mark Griffiths, our highly skilled cosmetic dentist, can present you with the entirety of your treatment options during your appointment.
Types of Dental Crowns
Dental crowns can be fabricated from many different materials, which each vary in their longevity and ability to blend harmoniously with your smile. Our Bankers Hill practice primarily offers three types of dental crowns:
All Porcelain: All porcelain crowns are one of the most aesthetically pleasing restorative options, as they are translucent and bear a strong resemblance to natural tooth enamel. That said, porcelain restorations are generally only recommended to restore the front teeth. When these crowns are placed in the back teeth, the risk of fracture typically increases.
Gold: While they do not look as natural among your surrounding teeth when compared to other options, gold dental crowns can be incredibly durable and effective when placed discreetly over the back molars. Due to its inherent strength, a gold crown can be particularly well-suited for individuals who tend to clench or grind their teeth. They are also considered structurally similar to natural teeth, allowing the surrounding soft tissues to readily adapt to the crown. These restorations also offer the benefit of requiring minimal tooth preparation before placement, allowing you to retain more of your natural enamel.
Porcelain Fused to Metal: A dental crown made of porcelain fused to metal can offer the strength of a gold crown with the aesthetic appeal of a porcelain restoration. This type of crown is composed of a metal base fused to a porcelain exterior, providing patients with both beauty and durability. The risk of potential fractures is present, but only the outer portion of the crown is typically damaged in the event of a chip or break.
How is the Dental Crown Procedure Performed?
Placing a dental crown typically requires two in-office appointments to complete the process. During your first visit, any existing decay will be removed and the surface of the damaged tooth will be shaped to achieve a natural and comfortable fit for your dental crown. Impressions of your teeth will also be taken at this time, which will then be sent to an advanced dental lab for fabrication. Dr. Griffiths will place a temporary crown to complete your smile until your long-term restoration is manufactured.
Once your custom-designed crown is ready for placement, Dr. Griffiths will affix your dental crown over the top of your tooth. Our team will check for biting and spacing issues before you leave to ensure a comfortable fit for your crown is achieved.
How Long Will Dental Crowns Last?
Dental crowns are designed to be long-lasting, but a replacement may be necessary in the future if the crown is damaged by decay or injury. In most cases, a crown can offer protection for years—if not decades. Gold dental crowns, especially, can be very enduring with routine maintenance. Dr. Griffiths recommends maintaining good oral hygiene habits to maximize the lifespan of your crown, such as keeping up with daily brushing and flossing, as well as attending your twice-yearly dental check-ups. If you are prone to teeth grinding or clenching, we also advise wearing a mouthguard or night guard to protect your crowns from unnecessary wear and tear.
How Much Do Dental Crowns Cost?
A dental crown typically costs between $1,100 and $1,400 depending on the unique details of your dental plan. Factors that may influence the total cost of treatment include:
- The materials used to create your dental crown
- The location of the affected tooth
- Whether preliminary treatments were necessary before crown placement
Our office will be able to assess the cost of your treatment after Dr. Griffiths evaluates your needs in a consultation. To help ensure high-quality crowns are accessible to a wide range of patients, Griffiths Smiles accepts dental financing from CareCredit® for qualified patients. The payment options available via CareCredit® can help approved individuals pay for out-of-pocket expenses through low monthly installments rather than a lump sum. If you have any questions about our insurance or financing policies, please don’t hesitate to call our Bankers Hill practice.
After your appointment, we’ll encourage you to follow up with our team regularly. While proper oral hygiene is essential, you will also require regular dental care to ensure your dental crown remains in its best possible state. Please contact Griffiths Smiles today if you have a question about our restorative dental services, or if you would like to schedule an appointment with Dr. Mark Griffiths.