Hubbard Dental
A close up of a model of dental crowns

Types of Dental Crowns and Cost

When it comes to dental crowns, not all are created equal. The type of crown you need depends on your dental situation, budget, and aesthetic appeal goals. This guide will answer the question, “What are the different types of dental crowns?” and give you an idea of their associated costs.

What Are Dental Crowns?

Dental crowns, also known as caps, are artificial coverings placed over a damaged or decaying tooth to restore its form, function, and aesthetic. They are custom-made to fit snugly over the remaining part of a tooth, resembling its natural appearance. Crowns can be made from various materials, including ceramic, porcelain, metal, or a combination of these materials.

They treat various dental conditions such as a broken tooth, a tooth with a large filling, or after a root canal treatment. The dental crown strengthens the tooth and improves its overall appearance, contributing to a healthier and more attractive smile.

What Types of Dental Crowns Are There?

1. Metal Crowns

Metal crowns, often made from a durable gold alloy, are favored for their long-lasting durability. These crowns are resistant to chipping and breaking and require less removal of the original tooth structure, which can be beneficial for maintaining oral health. However, their gold color is less aesthetically pleasing than other alternatives and may be more noticeable when you smile or speak.

2. Porcelain Crowns

Known for their natural appearance, porcelain crowns can closely match your natural teeth, making them a popular choice for visible teeth in your smile line. While they’re visually pleasing, they are not as durable as metal crowns and can chip or break more easily. Furthermore, not all dental insurance plans cover porcelain crowns, which can increase your out-of-pocket dental crown cost.

3. Ceramic Crowns

Ceramic crowns are another metal-free option that can benefit individuals with allergies or sensitivities to metals, thus potentially preventing allergic reactions. These crowns provide an excellent color match to your natural teeth, making them an ideal choice for front teeth. However, they may wear down neighboring teeth more than other types of crowns present. The expense for this type of crown can vary and may be partially covered by dental insurance.

4. Porcelain Bonded to Metal Crowns

Combining the strength of metal with the natural appearance of porcelain, these crowns are both durable and visually pleasing. However, the metal underlying the crown’s porcelain can sometimes show through as a dark line, especially at the gum line, even more so if your gums recede. Costs for these types of crowns can be slightly higher, but most insurance providers cover a portion of the cost.

5. Zirconia Crowns

These are the newest additions to the various types of dental crowns. Zirconia crowns are beloved for their superior strength and durability, so they are often used for back teeth. They can be colored to match the shade of your natural teeth, providing a visually pleasing and secure solution for damaged teeth. While the average costs for zirconia crowns can be higher due to their numerous benefits and the material used, many dental insurance providers may cover part of the cost.

Why Should You Consider Dental Crowns?

  • Restoration of Tooth Shape. Different dental crowns are available in dental offices, and all serve a specific purpose—restoring the tooth’s natural shape. If your tooth has been damaged or worn down over time, a dental crown can bring it back to its normal size and shape, enhancing its aesthetic appeal and functionality.
  • Protection for Weak Teeth. Dental crowns act as a protective cover for your weakened teeth—those compromised by decay or a fracture. By enveloping the damaged tooth, the crown can prevent it from further deterioration or even a possible extraction.
  • Support for a Large Filling. Sometimes, a dental crown can offer support when not much tooth structure is left, and a large filling is required. The crown functions as a stabilizer, surrounding the tooth and holding the filling material in place.
  • Attach Bridges. The traditional crown plays a crucial role in dental bridges among the different types of dental crowns. They serve as the ‘anchors’ that hold the bridge securely on either side of the missing tooth.
  • Cover Misshaped or Discolored Teeth. Teeth restorations like dental crowns can be one of the affordable options in correcting the appearance of misshaped or discolored teeth. This not only improves the look of your teeth but also boosts your confidence.
  • Longevity. With proper oral hygiene, dental crowns are a long-lasting dental solution. While types of dental crowns and costs may vary, they tend to last for many years, proving their worth as a worthwhile investment for healthy teeth.

When Is the Right Time to Have Dental Crowns?

  • When You Have a Weak Tooth. Dentists recommend dental crowns when your tooth has become weakened by decay or fractures. A crown can provide the necessary support to prevent a weak tooth from breaking.
  • Following a Root Canal Treatment. After a root canal treatment, your tooth may be vulnerable. Dental professionals often suggest a crown to protect your tooth from further damage and to restore its regular function.
  • To Improve the Appearance of Your Teeth. If your teeth are discolored or poorly shaped, dental crowns can help enhance your smile. They can be designed to match the shape, size, and color of your existing teeth, leading to a more uniform look.
  • Restoration of Broken Teeth. Dental crowns can restore the tooth’s original structure if you’ve had an accident that led to broken, cracked, or severely worn teeth.
  • To Hold a Dental Bridge in Place. Dental crowns are often used to keep dental bridges securely in place. They are fitted over the teeth on either side of the gap to anchor the bridge.

How Much Do Dental Crowns Cost?

The cost of dental crowns varies depending on several factors. But on average, they can range from $500 to $2,000 per tooth. If you’re looking for a lower-cost alternative, you can opt for an indirect resin crown (same-day dental crowns), which can cost between $400 to $600 per tooth. Note that these types of crowns may not last as long as traditional crowns made of porcelain or metal.

It’s important to remember that investing in a high-quality dental crown could potentially save you from further dental complications and costs in the future. Contact your dentist for a more accurate estimate.

What Factors Influence the Price of Dental Crown Treatment?

The Type of Crown

There are a variety of dental crowns, and each type comes with a different price tag. Common types of crowns include ceramic, porcelain, resin, and metal crowns. For example, porcelain crowns typically provide the most natural appearance but may cost more than other types.

Materials Used

Metal-free crowns may have a higher price due to their natural-looking appearance and durability. Zirconia and porcelain crowns are typically more expensive than metal crowns due to their high-quality material.

Dental Crown Procedure

The process of fitting and installing the crown can also affect the cost. Some procedures, like getting a root canal or dental implant before the crown, can add to the total cost.

Natural Teeth Condition

The state of your oral health can also influence the cost. If you have extreme tooth decay, weak teeth, or a fractured tooth, additional treatments may be required before getting a crown, which can increase the cost significantly.

Geographical Location

Dental care costs can vary widely by location. Costs are typically higher in urban areas due to increased overhead costs.

Dentist’s Expertise

A highly experienced dental professional may charge more for their services than a less experienced dentist.

Dental Insurance

Insurance plans vary greatly in what they cover. Some insurance companies may cover a portion of the cost depending on the necessity of the crown for oral health. It’s important to check with your insurance provider to understand your coverage.

Crown’s Purpose

The purpose of the crown can also influence the cost. Crowns used for cosmetic purposes may not be covered by insurance, driving up out-of-pocket expenses. On the other hand, crowns used to correct functional issues, like a damaged tooth, may be partially or fully covered.

Does Dental Insurance Cover Dental Crowns?

Dental insurance typically covers dental crowns, but not in all cases. It largely depends on the specifics of your insurance plan and the reason for the procedure.

Many dental insurance plans cover crowns as part of their major restorative dental care coverage. This includes procedures like root canals, dentures, bridges, and crowns. However, some plans may require pre-authorization for dental crowns. In such cases, your dentist will send a treatment plan to the insurance company for approval before the procedure can be done.

Sometimes, even porcelain crowns, which are often used for their cosmetic appeal, are usually covered by dental insurance because they play a crucial role in maintaining good dental health. Make sure to check with your specific dental insurance provider to understand what is and isn’t covered under your plan Bennie.

Book Your First Appointment at Hubbard Dental for Dental Crowns

Exploring the types of dental crowns and their costs helps you make more informed decisions about your dental health. At Hubbard Dental, we are committed to guiding you through each step of the process. Not all crowns are created equal, but with the right expert advice and care, you can trust you’re making the best decision for your smile.

Book your initial consultation with us today, and let us help you find the best option for your crown procedure. We believe in creating smiles, one tooth at a time!