Are you in need of a dental crown? What is the difference between one type and another? Also, why does their cost also differ? A dental crown is a fixed individual prosthetic in which a material, usually porcelain, replaces the enamel layer. For this kind of restoration, the dentist grinds the outermost layer of a tooth over all its surfaces, leaving the living core of the tooth untouched. The crown then sits over this preparation and is held in place by both mechanical retention and cement. Crowns are an excellent way to restore fractured or chipped teeth, to protect teeth with root canal treatments, and to modify the natural anatomy of one or several teeth. Also, with good care and regular cleanings, they can last 10 to 20 years. Now, there is a variety of materials available in crownwork. We put together those most commonly used in order to help you choose the crown that works best for you. Broadly speaking, there are three main categories.
You probably remember those bright, full gold crowns hidden in the back of someone´s mouth. These are full-cast crowns. They are either cast in base metal, in high noble metal, or in full gold. The quality and price of these depend on how much precious metal is embedded in the alloy used. The base metal is usually a mixture of several metals including nickel and copper. This will have the least cost but may cause some allergic reactions. Some alloys also include titanium which makes them a noble metal. When the alloy includes more than 25 percent of precious metals such as silver, palladium, or platinum, the material is considered a high noble metal. Full gold crowns are also alloys that include a high percentage, usually forty percent, of gold. The benefits of gold are that it is hypoallergenic, it has great resistance and durability, they carry a resale value, and they do not stain the gums with the characteristic dark margin of base metal. Its disadvantage is its cost because full-cast gold crowns are more expensive than full-porcelain crowns, and their aesthetic value since they do not blend naturally with the rest of your teeth.
These crowns have a metal framework fused through high temperatures with a layer of porcelain. As in full-cast crowns, their value is based on the metal composition of the framework, and we have porcelain fused to a base metal, noble metal, high noble metal, and gold crowns. Since there is less metal involved, they are less expensive than their corresponding full –cast options. They are also more natural-looking. Their disadvantage is their durability. Because metal and porcelain have different resistance, over time the porcelain tends to chip and leaves parts of the metal exposed. Porcelain fused to base metal also stains the gum tissues.
These crowns are either milled in full ceramic materials such as zirconium or they are also fused to porcelain. They are usually more expensive than porcelain fused to metal crowns due to their fabrication process, which involves milling rather than casting, but they are the most natural-looking option. Full-zirconium also offers durability comparable to full-cast gold crowns and they are equally hypoallergenic. Another benefit of ceramic crowns is that they do not stain your gums over time, and they mirror real tooth enamel.
At the Costa Rica Dental Team, we use only porcelain crowns for our restorations. The benefit of getting them at Costa Rica is that we make them affordable while you get all their benefits. Paired with our dental lab, we work to render beautiful as well as functional results. In fact, most of our cosmetic restorations are done with porcelain crowns because they allow wider possibilities in the design of your smile. Click here for examples of our restorations with crowns, and remember we work with an incredible guarantee policy.