Do you have cracked, chipped, or missing teeth? Are you wondering if it’s time to think about dental crowns?
Dental crowns are an incredibly effective and affordable way to get the smile you want in a short amount of time. Yet where do you go to get them, and how much does a dental crown cost? What are the different types of dental crowns available to those who need them?
Let’s take a look.
What Are Dental Crowns?
A dental crown is a tooth-shaped “cap” that can be placed snuggly over your tooth. They are often used for protecting weak teeth, restoring broken teeth, or holding dental bridges in place.
During your initial consultation for a dental crown, your teeth will get examined and X-rayed. Your dentist may recommend a root canal if there is any tooth decay or risk of infection.
Your dentist will then take an impression of the tooth that’s going to get the crown, as well as the teeth above and below it. This is done so that your bite won’t be negatively impacted.
After two or three weeks, you’ll come back for your second visit and your crown will get placed on your teeth.
What Are the Benefits of Dental Crowns?
The most obvious benefits of dental crowns are cosmetic. Your smile will be restored and you can be confident when speaking to people who can see it.
In addition, a crown can improve your overall oral health. Your teeth will be less vulnerable to the acids produced by dental plaque, which can lead to tooth decay. It can also prevent your teeth from falling apart, which can lead to even more damage and gum disease.
Dental crowns can also serve to reduce tooth sensitivity. Cold drinks and hot food will no longer lead to the extreme pain you used to experience.
Compared to treatments such as dentures and veneers, dental crowns are a more long-lasting and sturdy option. And they are not as expensive as options such as dental implants.
What Are the Types of Dental Crowns?
Your dentist may recommend one of several types of dental crowns, and it’s important to know what’s available to you.
Gold crowns, for example, are often made of a combination of copper and other metals. They are usually very strong and long-lasting. Gold crowns are popular for back teeth but often aren’t used for front teeth because their color makes it obvious that you’re wearing a crown.
Porcelain crowns, by contrast, are much more popular. These match your natural teeth in terms of their color, shape, and size. They are also free from toxins.
Porcelain crowns are often used for front teeth because of their subtle aesthetics. However, they are not as strong as metal crowns. Porcelain crowns can last for an extended period of time, but they require careful maintenance.
Another popular type of crown is a porcelain-fused-to-metal crown (PFM.) These are strong, inexpensive, and not easily noticeable. However, they can wear down easily on people who tend to clench their teeth.
Similarly, zirconia crowns are strong, long-lasting, and blend in with your natural teeth. These crowns can also be made right in your dentist’s office. Zirconia crowns, however, can be difficult to adjust.
Finally, E-Max lithium crowns are durable and attractive. Yet they can be more expensive than other options.
How Much Does a Dental Crown Cost?
A dental crown can cost anywhere from $800 to $1,700 per crown. Porcelain-fused-to-metal crowns tend to be the least expensive. Crowns made of pure porcelain and gold, however, are more costly.
You’ll want to consider durability when making a crown decision. They can last between 10 to 30 years, so the least expensive crown may not always be the right one for you. You may want to invest in a dental crown that won’t need to get replaced anytime in the near future.
Other factors that impact your dental crown cost are the condition of your tooth, the expertise of your dentist, and your geographical location. For example, you may pay more for dental treatments in urban areas than you would in more rural neighborhoods.
Many health insurance plans won’t cover cosmetic dentistry. Your dental insurance, however, will likely cover at least part of the cost. Make sure you speak with your customer service representative before making a final decision about your treatment.
You can also ask your dentist about payment plans. Some practices will allow you to pay the treatment off a little each month so it will fit more comfortably into your budget. Others may offer a discount if you pay for the entire treatment at once.
If you don’t have dental insurance, or if your insurance only covers part of the cost, you can ask your employer about a Health Savings Account (HSA.) These allow you to put aside tax-sheltered money each month that can be used to pay for cosmetic dentistry.
If there are no HSAs available through your benefits package, ask your Human Resources representative about a Flexible Spending Account (FSA.) These are similar in that they allow you to put aside tax-protected money each month that can be used to cover health expenses.
The Value of Dental Crowns
Dental crowns are an investment that will keep you looking and feeling your best for years to come. With the right crown type and the right dentist, you can be on your way toward a new smile in no time.
Don’t stop getting smart about your smile now. For quality dental work in the Lexington, Kentucky area, contact us today.