Dental crowns are artificial tooth caps often used in combination with root canal therapy. Crowns come in a few varieties that all have different composition materials. Choosing the right dental crown for your situation depends upon your needs, how you want the final crown to look and how much you value durability compared to attractiveness.
Here are some tips on which dental crown might be right for your situation.
Metal Crowns Save Money
Crowns made out of a metal alloy are among the strongest and most durable on the market. So why do they also tend to be the cheapest crown option? The metallic appearance makes it very clear that you have a crown. There's no way that a metal crown is ever going to look natural.
But if the crown is going on a rear tooth, you might not care that it's silver or gold in tone. Rear teeth and financial concerns are two of the best reasons for going with a metal crown rather than one of the more natural looking alternatives.
Porcelain and Metal Offer Strength and Fit
Some dental crowns feature a porcelain top coat over a metal base. This offers the strength of a metal crown with a more natural looking upper portion. Porcelain and metal are great for people who want to save a bit of money or who don't have any of the concerns that would make a ceramic crown a better option.
What are the concerns attached to porcelain and metal crowns? That metal portion can become visible if your teeth further decay or if your gums start to recede. You will have a noticeable dark line right at the bottom of the crown where the metal is visible. Again, if the crown will be on a rear tooth this might not be a major concern. But if it's a front tooth and your gums are already starting to recede, you might want to go with ceramic.
Ceramic Crowns Look the Most Natural
Ceramic crowns offer the most natural look regardless of your gum condition. The crowns don't contain any metal that could peek through the crown if its line is exposed. So ceramic is the best choice for those who need crowns on front teeth and value appearance over all other crown qualities.
Ceramic crowns tend to be one of the more expensive options. And the lack of metal means these crowns are less strong and durable than the other crown options. If you have a history of needing root canal therapy and crowns, you might want to go with something with metal when you can. Leave the ceramic for front teeth that have recessed gums that would show off the metal line in the porcelain crowns.
Ultimately, your decision on crown type is a highly personal manner that should be discussed with your dentist. Make an appointment with a dentist like Tisdelle Michael J DDS to discuss your options.