what-is-a-dental-crown

Dental Crown Options in Los Angeles and West Hollywood, California

Where did the dental crown originate from?

Dental crowns date back nearly two thousand years. In the third century, gold was used to restore damaged teeth. By the late 1800s, ceramics emerged as a treatment to cover and protect teeth from further deterioration. Ceramics cracked easily back then, so gold remained a popular material for crowns.

Today, several materials exist to provide strong, durable, and esthetic restorations for front and back teeth.

Crowns can brighten a smile, anchor a bridge, and cover a dental implant. Crowns have transformed people’s lives by giving them beautiful teeth and bright smiles. These restorations continue to be one of the most common procedures performed in dental offices each year.

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Dental Crown Types

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When so much of a tooth is missing that traditional fillings cannot repair the damage, your dentist might recommend a crown. You can maintain a crown for many years with good oral hygiene and regular dental visits.

Crowns are made from several materials, including:

  • Metal. These crowns function well on back teeth that are not visible when smiling or talking. Gold and other metals used for these restorations have the advantage of not breaking or chipping under chewing pressure. However, their metallic color makes them less desirable for many people.
  • Porcelain-fused to metal. These crowns combine the strength and durability of metal with the natural appearance of all-ceramic restorations. But these very popular crowns can cause wear issues with the opposing teeth.
  • All-porcelain crowns. This is the most popular crown used today, especially for front teeth.
  • Zirconia. These durable, strong, and non-abrasive crowns match the color of natural teeth very closely. These require one appointment for placement.
  • Composite resin. These less expensive crowns wear down quickly, making them better suited for temporary crowns.

Onlay Crowns

Onlays can restore teeth with cavities, cracks, or defective fillings. Onlays preserve more teeth and help restore your tooth’s natural strength and durability. 

Onlays are made primarily from these three materials:

  • Porcelain
  • Composite resin
  • Gold

¾ Crowns

These crowns replace the biting surface, the sides, and the back of the tooth while preserving the entire front of the tooth.

This is an excellent alternative to dental crowns that leaves the natural part of your tooth untouched. This makes it, so your appearance won’t change much when smiling!

 

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Dental Crown Cost 

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Dentists have a variety of materials we can use to make crowns which is why it isn’t easy to pinpoint an exact dental crown cost. Realistically, you can expect your dental crown to cost anywhere between $300-$3,000 per tooth without insurance.

However, the cost of a dental crown can decrease up to 50% with insurance. 

The good news is that you have a say in the type of crown you want, giving you some control over how much you’re going to pay. 

Of course, like any luxury we want to buy, the price tag is not universal. The price for a crown in Los Angeles, California, can be completely different than the price you get from a dentist in San Diego. 

Likewise, two dentists in Beverly Hills can charge different prices because one might have more experience (or have higher overhead costs) than the other. 

With that being said, let’s go over dental crown types, how long they last, and the cost for each one.

Dental Crown Types and Cost

A dental crown’s cost depends on the material used and any other necessary procedures such as gum surgery or root canal treatment. Each additional service causes a significant increase in the total cost.

You can read this guide for a comprehensive look at dental prices.

Below is an example of the price range for six types of crowns:

1. Stainless Steeldental-crown-cost

Dentists only recommend SSCs to children who have cavities in their baby teeth. Because they’re meant to be temporary, stainless steel crowns cost $300 – $500 per tooth.

Typically, a dentist fills a child’s cavity with amalgam fillings. However, if there is significant tooth decay, a crown may be necessary.

Dentists also make SSCs as temporary crowns for adults.

How Long Do They Last?

Stainless steel crowns should last until your child’s baby tooth naturally falls out. On average, you can expect them to last 4-10 years. 

2. Composite Resin

Resin crowns cost $300 – $600 per tooth, making them one of the least expensive options. Not an excellent choice for the long-term, but resin crowns are helpful as an interim restoration.

How Long Do They Last?

Due to its low strength and durability, dentists today will only use resin with temporary crowns. It’s unlikely that your resin crown will last more than two years.

3. Metaldental-crown-cost

Metal crowns cost around $800 – $1,400 per tooth. These are a great option for back teeth because they’re the most durable and resistant to cracks or fractures. Since we use our back teeth (molars) to grind and chew our food, we must use strong material.

Dentists can make metal crowns out of copper, gold, or other corrosion-resistant materials.

Gold crowns can be cost-effective at $600-$1,500 per tooth. Keep in mind that this is the price without insurance.

While durable and resistant to corrosion, gold crowns (or gold alloy, which looks silver) look the least natural. Without using porcelain or resin (which mimics the color of your teeth), the metal might be visible in your tooth.

How Long Do They Last?

 

Metal crowns last the longest, at around 15-30 years. 

4. Porcelain

Porcelain crowns without metal can cost $800 – $3,000 per tooth. These are very natural-appearing crowns, but they’re more prone to cracking than resin or metal crowns. Because of this, we primarily use all-porcelain or ceramic crowns on front teeth.

These are also a great choice if you have a metal allergy. 

How Long Do They Last? 

Because they lack a strong root structure, all-porcelain crowns last 5-15 years, depending on your oral regime.

5. Porcelain-Infused Metaldental-crown-cost

This is the most common type of crown, so they cost $875 – $1,400 per tooth.

The metal base ensures it stays resilient and rooted in place, while the porcelain overcast allows your crown to blend in with your natural teeth. 

The disadvantage to these types of crowns are two-fold:

  1. Sometimes the metal underneath the porcelain can become visible, giving an unfavorable appearance.
  2. The porcelain is more prone to cracks and chips than all-metal crowns.

How Long Do They Last? 

Porcelain-infused metal crowns last about 10-15 years (unless you’re a teeth grinder or clencher).

6. Zirconia Crownsdental-crown-cost

Zirconia is a translucent material that is as strong as metal and as aesthetically pleasing as porcelain crowns. They also have biocompatibility which means they’re less likely to cause infection or irritation.

With all these advantages, zirconia crowns are often more expensive than other materials, averaging about $1,000-$2,500 per tooth.

Another advantage is that monolithic zirconia crowns are less susceptible to cracks or fracture, according to a 2016 study.

However, there’s less room for error when constructing zirconia compared to metal or even porcelain crowns. They’re less flexible and therefore difficult to mold.

For example, if there is a fabrication defect or your dentist places the crown wrong, it’s more likely that the zirconia crown will (inadvertently) chip.

How Long Do They Last?

Despite this, Zirconia crowns are insanely strong. They can last anywhere from 10-15 years.

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Overview of the cost of dental crowns without insurance:

  • Stainless Steel Crowns (SSC): $300 – $500 (per tooth)
  • Composite Resin Crowns: $300-$600 (per tooth)
  • Metal and Gold Crowns: $600-$1,500 (per tooth)
  • Porcelain (Ceramic) Crowns: $800-$3,000 (per tooth)
  • Porcelain-Infused Metal Crowns: $875 – $1,400 (per tooth)
  • Zirconia Crowns: $1,000 – $2,500 (per tooth)

Talk to your insurance provider about getting 50% of your dental crowns covered.

It’s also worth noting that any dental service price factors in location, dentist experience, and your overall oral health. This is why you might see conflicting prices in your online research. To get the most accurate price, contact your family dentist.

Is There Pain with Dental Crowns? 

dental-crown

Your tooth and the surrounding gum get numbed before the beginning of the procedure. Local dental anesthetics and sedation make getting a crown a painless process. Keep in mind the tooth may experience sensitivity for several days following the procedure. 

Most dental crown procedures (except for Zirconia crowns) require two office visits to complete the process.

First Visit

This visit includes:

  • Thorough oral exam
  • Dental x-ray
  • Dental anesthesia to numb the tooth
  • Shaping the tooth to create space for the crown on the tooth
  • Inspection of remaining tooth for decay or cracks
  • An impression of the tooth to create a model on which the dental lab fabricates the crown
  • Placement of a temporary crown

Second Visit

This visit includes:

  • Discussion about any symptoms such as cold sensitivity while wearing the temporary crown
  • Removal of the temporary crown
  • Check the fit and bite of the permanent crown
  • Make necessary adjustments to the crown
  • Cementation of the crown to tooth with dental cement
  • Final check to ensure a perfect fit and bite

The new crown may feel different for several days until you adjust to it. You can expect some cold sensitivity, but that should resolve in days.

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Dental Crowns Versus Cap: What’s the difference?

dental-crown

There is a subtle difference between a dental crown and a dental cap.

It’s spelling.

Yep, that is the only difference. These are the same dental restoration. Lay people refer to this restoration as a cap and have for many years. Dentists call the same repair a dental crown.

So don’t let this terminology confuse you!

 

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FAQ’S

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Is it painful to have a crown put on your tooth?

No! Due to the advancements in local dental anesthetics and sedation, getting a crown is a painless procedure. You may experience sensitivity (especially to cold and air) for several days following the placement of your crown. Contact your dentist if this persists!

How long do dental crowns last?

A dental crown can last 5-30 years, depending on the type of material your choose. Proper oral hygiene and regular dental visits can also prolong the life of your crown.

Many factors determine your crown’s longevity, such as the food and drinks you choose, habits such as grinding your teeth and preventing tooth decay and gum disease.

How much is a dental crown?

The price of a crown varies widely depending on the material used. A typical range is generally between $800 to $1700.

Is a dental cap and crown the same thing?

Yes, a cap and crown are the same dental restoration. Dentists refer to them as crowns, and laypeople have called them caps.

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Conclusion

dental-crown

So how will you know if a dental crown is right for you? By coming in to visit Lasry Dental Clinic, of course! You can find us at 1125 South Beverly Dr, Floor 7 / Suite 750A Los Angeles, CA 90035.

You can read about our current Safety Guidelines here, and you can learn a little more about our Dental Crown and Bridges Services on our website as well. 

Book your appointment today or give us a call at 310-734-7705.

1 reply
  1. Eli Richardson
    Eli Richardson says:

    It really helped when you talked about dental crowns and how they come in different materials. Recently, one of my cousins got involved in a car crash, and some of his tooth pieces got damaged. My cousin wants to start exploring his restoration options, so I’ll be sure to share your article with him. Thanks for the advice on dental crowns and how to choose one for your needs.

    Reply

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