The Different Types of Dental Crowns, Explained

types of dental crowns

Dental crowns are an increasingly popular way to restore damaged and decayed teeth. There are several types of dental crowns that aren’t the obvious metallic ones you often see.

You may need a dental crown for one of many reasons: large cavities, chipped teeth, restoration after a root canal, or simple cosmetic reasons like color.

If you are looking to get a dental crown, you might already know that there are various options for you. Which is the right one?

Learn more about the different types of dental crowns in this complete guide.

What Is a Dental Crown?

Teeth can decay or become damaged for several reasons. If one or many of your teeth lose their shape, a dental crown may be necessary.

A dental crown is a cap that a dentist places over a broken or otherwise damaged tooth. These crowns are meant to last as long as possible, and they are custom-made for patients. Dental crowns are the go-to solution to restore a damaged tooth’s appearance and function.

Note that dental crowns can also replace entire teeth when you pair them together with dental implants. The dental implant acts as the root to secure the crown to your jawbone when there is no tooth for the dental crown to sit on top of.

Different Types of Dental Crowns

There are several types of dental crowns that all serve slightly different functions. Some are more durable, natural-looking, or cost-effective. You and your dentist should decide which crown best fits your specific needs.

Dental crowns can be made of many materials. This includes porcelain, composite resin, zirconia, different metal alloys, ceramic, and more.

Porcelain Crowns

At the top of the list of most popular types of crowns is the porcelain crown. These are made up entirely of porcelain and are intended to give the most natural look.

Before you get a porcelain crown, your dentist examines your teeth for their color and shape. Your crown should look like your other teeth, and it should not be noticeable. This is a great option if you need a crown on your front teeth.

Porcelain crowns have no metal, so they are non-toxic. But, this means that they are also not as strong as metal crowns. And they are more expensive. They can last you a long time if you take care of them. If you don’t, you can expect your porcelain crown to become damaged.

Porcelain-Fused-to-Metal Crowns

Also known as PFM crowns, porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns are an effective and durable crown option. They are among the oldest and most widely used types of dental crowns. They bring to the table the strength of metal crowns and the beauty of porcelain crowns.

Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns are less costly than full porcelain. They are made up of a metal base, then covered in porcelain to conceal the metal.

The disadvantages of this type of crown are that it is not the most undetectable. Because of the metal underneath, there is often a silver or grey line where the crown sits at the gums.

Zirconia Crowns

Zirconia is one of the newest materials used for dental crowns. It has the strength of metal, yet it looks like porcelain. This makes them a very popular choice among patients.

The crowns contain no metal. They are non-toxic and unlikely to trigger allergic reactions.

Zirconia crowns are long-lasting while also being undetectable as a crown to most eyes. Compared to porcelain crowns, zirconia crowns are less likely to be damaged and worn down over time. This makes them even more cost-effective.

Their strength can also be a disadvantage, though. Some users have sustained damage to their natural teeth that bite against their zirconia crowns.

Gold and Metal Crowns

Gold crowns are only named gold for their color. In reality, these are normally made up of a mixture of metals, including copper, nickel, chromium, and palladium. Gold metal crowns are often used on back teeth because of their unnatural, metallic color.

The main advantage of gold crowns is that they are super durable. They can withstand a lot of chewing and biting without wearing down. When these crowns are properly cared for, they can last a long time.

One serious drawback to these crowns is their composition. In some cases, gold alloy crowns have triggered allergic reactions as well as swelling and inflammation.

Gold crowns are a subsection of metal crowns. Metal crowns have all the advantages and disadvantages of gold crowns, except they may contain some different alloys.

All-Resin Crowns

All-resin crowns or composite resin crowns are often used as temporary crowns. They have a composition of plastic materials, and their look mimics real teeth.

For the most part, these exist to give you a temporary crown while your permanent one is being made. All-resin crowns wear down, crack, and break quite easily. They cannot withstand biting or chewing without becoming damaged. Likewise, All-resin crowns are unlikely to damage other teeth when biting against them.

Get Your Smile Back

You don’t have to continue to live with damaged or decaying teeth. Restoring your teeth with dental crowns can make you feel happier and more confident in your gorgeous smile.

The many types of dental crowns can be intimidating, but we are here to help! Newbury Dental Group makes custom crowns that will fit your teeth perfectly. They are committed to giving you a smile you can be proud of. Contact us today to set up your consultation and start your journey towards getting your smile back!


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