Dental crowns are fixed prosthetic devices cemented directly onto existing teeth or implants. Crowns can also be used in dental bridges to fill a gap if you’re missing one or more teeth. Due to their many uses, it’s important to understand the different types of dental crowns available, and the advantages of each.
Ceramic Dental Crowns
Ceramic, porcelain-based dental crowns are most often used to restore front teeth. Due to their natural color and texture, ceramic crowns are able to blend effortlessly with your remaining natural teeth, and can be given a hint of color to match your natural teeth. Porcelain crowns are not well suited for molars and pre-molars, as ceramic can become brittle when exposed to heavy biting forces.
Porcelain-Fused to Metal Dental Crowns
Porcelain-fused to metal crowns provide patients with the best of both worlds. The porcelain part of the crown provides the patient with a natural-looking tooth, and the metal structure is ultra-durable. To undergo a porcelain-fused to metal restoration, the dentist must remove a moderate amount of tooth structure.
Gold Alloys Dental Crowns
Dental crowns constructed of gold alloys contain a combination of gold, copper, and various other metals. Gold alloys provides a number of perks over other dental crown types. This type of crown is strong and will not fracture. It will also not wear away the underlying tooth. Gold alloys are also biocompatible with gum tissue.
Base Metal Alloys Dental Crowns
Base metal alloys dental crowns are resistant to corrosion and incredibly strong. They also contain non-noble metals that are gentle against neighboring teeth. Only a minimum amount of tooth structure must be removed before a dentist can apply this type of crown.
Dental crowns can be used for a wide range of reasons. Not only do durable crowns protect teeth, fill in gaps, and increase function, they can also give the patient a beautiful smile. Some of the most common reasons for acquiring a crown includes:
- To protect a weak tooth that has suffered from breakage or decay
- To restore a broken or worn down tooth
- To support a tooth with a large filling
- To cover a discolored or misshapen tooth
- To hold a dental bridge firmly in place
- To cover a dental implant
- To make a cosmetic modification for a more aesthetically-pleasing smile
Crowns can be used on dental patients of all ages. For more information about dental crowns, contact your dentist.