Which Crown Is Right For You?
What Are Porcelain Crowns?
A crown is a cap that covers a tooth to improve its shape, size or appearance. Porcelain crowns have long been a staple in dentistry, fixing smiles for over 100 years. Porcelain jacket crowns were first patented in 1889 by Charles H. Land, and hit the public in the early 1900’s. Modern porcelain crowns have come a long way, becoming much more durable, and are often fused to metal to extend their life and prevent chipping or fractures.
Why Choose a Porcelain crown?
There are many reasons why you would choose a porcelain crown. Generally accepted as the most natural looking crowns, these can be matched to your tooth color and can look near indistinguishable from your natural teeth. Naturally this makes them a good choice for front tooth repair.
Porcelain crowns can be used in a variety of ways, whether a tooth needs to be protected, restored, or a filling/dental bridge needs to be covered or secured, a porcelain crown can do the job.
Cracked and weak teeth can be protected, reducing the risk of further damage, and broken or nonfunctional teeth can be restored to their original state through a porcelain crown, giving you your bite back. These dental swiss army knives can even support a filling or plug a gap in a dental bridge.
Though porcelain crowns are durable, they can still be damaged by very sticky or hard foods. Hard foods (or objects) have the potential to crack your crown, leading to an early replacement, and sticky foods can pull on and loosen your crown as well. Be conscious with these kinds of foods, and always brush and floss your teeth and crown twice per day.
Additionally, make sure to check in with your dentist every 6 months to keep your crown in top condition. They can ensure your gums and supporting tooth are in good health and that your crown is properly seated to last for years to come.
Porcelain crowns are often the best option for replacing front teeth, but due to their composition these crowns can become brittle under heavy biting. Because of this, porcelain crowns are not ideal for replacing molars. These crowns are also more likely to wear down over time than other options, and require more of the tooth to be ground away. Because of this, some patients report increased hot/cold sensitivity after the procedure.
There are additional types of crowns that are available for consideration.
Porcelain fused to metal, or PFM crowns are both durable and visually appealing. Generally used for molar replacement, these are some of the strongest crowns and are highly resistant to chips or cracks. They also have a longer life expectancy than other dental crowns, having an average lifespan of 10-15 years.
Gold/metal alloy crowns, often made of gold, copper, and other metals, are slowly falling out of popularity. Though these crowns are incredibly durable, gentle on adjacent teeth, and require less tooth removal to be applied, their unnatural appearance has put off many consumers who are turning more and more to porcelain and PFM options.
To learn more about crowns, and for help deciding which one is right for you, call 801-477-2988 to speak with one of our experts today!